"Overnight Stay"

About: North Tyneside General Hospital

Having been transferred from ENSEC to ward 18 I was extremely impressed with all staff members on the ward. This ward is extremely busy with some very poorly patients who staff are attending to all of the time, nothing is too much trouble. I was lucky enough to be discharged the following afternoon and would like you to pass on my thanks and comments to the ward, The consultant explained all my test results, what medication they were prescribing for me to take home. Waiting for prescriptions for discharge however has not changed and I think this aplies to all hospitals I don't live far from the hospital so went home without them and my husband retuned 4 hours later to collect them, the nurse apologised the prescription was still not on the ward after another half hour wait it finally arrived. I understand that the pharmacy must be extremely busy but does this not highlight the need for more pharmacists and better delivery of medication for patients who are ready to leave the hospital but are unable to do so. Surely this means patients are spending far too much time waiting to be discharged. I was fortunate that my husband could return for my medication and I did not need it till later in the day, but for the elderly or people who live a distance away, would have had to stay on the ward for another 4 and half hours, having discussed this with friends and family this seems the biggest complaint for people waiting for discharge. This must also put extra pressure on the staff having people either taking up a bed or sitting in a waiting room waiting to go home. I understand after the consultants have done there rounds they have to then do discharge notes and write up prescriptions but surely the pharmacy must be understaffed

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Response from North Tyneside General Hospital

Dear Jake,

Many thanks for your kind feedback about the new hospital and the quality of care you received on ward 18. Thank you also for sharing your concerns about the delay in getting your prescription to you when the time came to go home.

Firstly can I apologise for the fact that we failed to get your medication to you in a timely way. I understand that you were able to avoid a long wait in hospital because you lived so nearby, but we know that this option is not available for many of our patients.

I discussed your concerns with the Head of Pharmacy David Campbell. The opening of the new emergency care hospital has radically changed the way we work. We know that the pharmacy model is evolving fast as we test new ways of working to address some of the challenges associated with delivering a very new and different model of care at The Northumbria.

We are currently auditing the system of medicines supply to see where improvements can be made.

Interestingly audit data shows that Pharmacy dispense most medicines within 20 minutes of being electronically ordered but we are experiencing some teething problems with the system of transport and delivery back from North Tyneside General Hospital to The Northumbria in Cramlington and we are working hard to address these.

Pharmacy have engaged the support of the Trust’s transformation team to support this work and we are expecting findings from this very soon which will help to highlight what needs to change.

I can appreciate that none of this helps you very much but please be assured we are aware of the problem and are working hard to resolve it. If you would like to be kept informed of the outcome of the improvement work please let me know : annie.laverty@nhct.nhs.uk

With thanks again for taking the time to give us feedback aimed at improving care for all our patients,


Annie Laverty - Director of patient experience

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