"So very, very short staffed. (Ward 18)"

About: Blackpool Victoria Hospital

The poor staff were rushed off their feet, they had few breaks, and to finish the planned work, they truly had to work very hard. I felt very sorry for them all. Whilst I was in, I heard one nurse ask another if she liked the ward, she replied "not really, I don't like care of the elderly". That shocked me, as I am still of working age. When an admission came on, the whole system seemed to break down, with little co-ordination between some staff, I personally think if the "Modern Matron", planned a better organized ward, including obtaining more staff, not only trained nurses - a lot of them are agency, but carers as well. Certainly could be so much better if they had more staff. - There is a national shortage of nurses, but not a national shortage of carers. So, Mr. Modern matron please improve the staffing levels on ward 18, and for goodness sake, try reducing some of the paperwork the staff are expected to do. It's becoming more of an administrative job for those nurses and I'm sure most of them - probably including yourself, went into nursing to care. Most people know the paper work increased to help resolve the risk of litigation, but the risk of litigation is clearly there when care is reduced simply on account of massive amount of paperwork. Come to think of it, the Modern Matron was never seen actually rolling his sleeves up and helping out on the ward - Band 7 surely should be able to work on the ward when the staff are under so much pressure. Don't suppose any of them are on a Band 7. As they say, "nice job if you can get it". I watched one drug round taking 2.5 hours, and in fact, it still didn't finish after than. They are good staff, but they need more numbers on the off duty.

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Response from Eleanor Walsh, Lead in Patient Experience & Engagement , Patient Experience, Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

picture of Eleanor Walsh

Thank you for taking the time to leave feedback on the care and treatment you received at Blackpool Victoria Hospital. I will be speaking with the area involved and share your comments with them as I’m sure they will be very disappointed to read about your experience.

The vast majority of our staff are extremely kind and compassionate and treat all patients equally, ensuring all our patients have an excellent experience whilst accessing our services. I was dissapointed to read about the comment you overheard from a member of staff, especially as Ward 18's speciality is Endocrinology not Care of the Elderly.

Matrons play a vital role in our Trust, bringing a vast amount of valuable nursing experience to the table. They not only manage a number of areas, but are responsible for ensuring patients are cared for appropriately at all times by the nursing staff and that patient care is of an optimum standard. The role of the matron involves monitoring, examining and highlighting risks in clinical areas, and if there were concerns with staffing this should have been raised appropriately by the matron you refer too. I will flag your concerns with the areas involved and am grateful for the honest feedback you have given us about your experience.

Yours sincerely

Eleanor Walsh

Lead in Patient Experience and Engagement

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