"Birch Ward = Hell for anyone with an eating..."

About: West Park Hospital

Felt strongly about this for a long time now ! I was an inpatient, voluntary ha! In 2013. I hardly saw my so called Consultant who seemed to preoccupied with furthering career and personal learning by concentrating on a small number of patients. I was very much left to "the system" .

This ward did have positives, few and far between, but must give a huge mention to the OT staff.....best therapists there in my opinion and so careing.

My time on Birch ..... Where do I start ! It was run like an army barracks with section threat punishments given often to keep those who dared to express themselves.

At the run up to my discharge one particular member of staff with a most unpleasant character said "do you know what your discharge plan is ?"

I said no, I hadn't been informed.

They proceeded to smirk, and raised their eyebrows. " may not be what you are expecting" they replied .They then walked away. Needless to say I was sent in a state of stress and worry considering I have a young child and had complied with everything asked of me ! Was that necessary really ? One of many occasions that staff treated me in such a cruel way.

I have been left with a life in shatters and no confidence. I don't know who I am supposed to be anymore. Also developed horrendous separation anxiety and a fear of hospital admissions. No faith in the mental health system at all.

I am disgusted that a care system which constantly fails it's patients is allowed to continue in its present state and our so called enlightened times.

Story from NHS Choices

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Response from West Park Hospital

Thank you for giving us feedback on your stay on Birch Ward, West Park Hospital during 2013. We appreciate all feedback received from patients and carers and use it to inform service improvements.

We are sorry to hear that your experience at that time was not good and would like to meet with you to discuss your concerns further if you are willing to do so.

We would like to reassure you that a significant amount of work has been undertaken on Birch ward over the last year around both systems / processes and staff development as we had already identified improvements were required.

Birch Ward was inspected by the CQC in January this year after which a number of improvement actions were undertaken. CQC visited again in August and gave us very positive feedback that improvements have now been made to the ward atmosphere and environment.

All staff in the Trust are expected to work to a set of value based standards and we will always investigate concerns raised about staff attitudes and behaviours. We appreciate the positive feedback from you about the OT staff which will be passed on. Thank you.

If you would like to get in touch to discuss any of your concerns further, please contact Corinne Aspel Senior Nurse Patient and Carer Experience on 01913333566.

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