"Stimulation needed in the Stroke unit"

About: Southmead Hospital

I read with interest the response of a member of staff from the ‘Advice and Complaints Team’ when a reviewer stated that there was little stimulation in the Stroke ward for patients. Having had my mother recovering in that ward for the last few weeks I would wholeheartedly agree that there is a desperate need for stimulation for patients. This member of staff is clearly out of touch with the majority of patients receiving care within the ward itself if they feel that the inmates could cope with using tablets. Not only are many of the patients elderly but more to the point are (though the disability their stroke has inflicted upon them) unable to operate a tablet or hold it upright so they can see it. As an extremely active and articulate pensioner, my mother needed some kind of stimulation. The best she could hope for was that something might happen as she stared out of the window of her room. Although the nursing care was very good, I’m sure that many health professionals working on that ward would agree with the visitors and patients that having TV and radios in the rooms would aid recovery. Also I feel that it would be beneficial for those who respond to complaints to visit the individual ward so they have a clearer understanding of the physical ability of those being treated within them. Then they may see the absurdity of suggesting they use hand held tablets, which most of them don’t own.

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Response from Southmead Hospital

Dear Anonymous – thank you for taking the time and trouble to post your views of the care provided by the Neurology facilities at Southmead Hospital.

When the hospital was built patient entertainment systems were considered, but the provision of services by the two authorised and approved NHS providers was prohibitively expensive, both for the Trust and in respect of the like costs for patients. As a consequence it was decided to make Wi-Fi available to allow access to entertainment services as many patients had their own devices. Following feedback such as your own, the Trust has recognised the need to provide improved patient stimulation. Many wards now have radios that can be loaned and TVs have been fitted to all communal patient quiet rooms. In addition I can confirm a project is underway to provide TVs in every patient room and 4 bedded ward. Once completed, I hope that your concerns will be resolved.

Kind regards - Steve Sykes

Advice and Complaints Team

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