"Mainly good care at University Hospital of Wales"

About: University Hospital Of Wales

(as the patient),

I was an inpatient at the University Hospital of Wales for 4 days, receiving IV antibiotics. I was admitted to the day surgery unit initally, transfered to another ward the following morning as the ward closed for the weekend, then transfered back again as the hospital was so full they had needed to reopen the ward to deal with an overflow of patients.

I experienced a massive variation in the quaility of the nursing care I received. The staff on the day surgery ward over the weekend were mostly agency staff, every one of whom was kind, professional and caring.

This was not my experience of the other ward I was transferred to. Here I was in a side room, with a door that would not close properly, situated just off the nurses' station. When it was time for shift handover I could hear most of what was said. I believe the staff were aware of this, because when it came to discussing me they lowered their voices, but had no such consideration for private details of other patients. I could hear the nurses gossiping at the desk for long periods of time - and responding to patients who requested assistance that they were busy.

I also felt unsafe in the way some of the nurses administered IV medications. Nurses who had never met me before gave me drugs without asking me my name or checking the armband I was wearing. In one case when I challenged a nurse about the fact that the line from the IV bag contained air bubbles she responded that it was OK, the medication would still run. I was more concerned about the risk of air embolus.

However, most of the nursing care I received was of a high quality, despite the fact that the hospital was overstretched and bursting at the seams.

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