"Ward 6"

About: University Hospital Of North Durham

I am very disappointed with my recent experience of Ward 6. There are exceptions to what I am going to say but, in the main, the staff were abrupt and dismissive. There was a distinct lack of empathy for an old lady nearing end of life and the general opinion seemed to be that she did not warrant any further treatment - she was virtually written off. I even had a discussion with a consultant where they actually had the gall to mention use of resources!

I know that a frail old lady of 96 is definitely nearing end of life but that does not excuse the lack of empathy and the overriding implication that by insisting on continuing treatment that I was somehow draining NHS resources.

I would also question the level of hygiene in a ward where there was acute infection. The only time I saw the cleansing sprays used at the end of the beds was by a student paramedic. Nurses and doctors moved from one patient to another, all of whom had varying infections, without ever spraying or washing their hands.

My mother was discharged, prematurely in my opinion, but it was with great relief that she actually got out of this ward. Such a contrast to her previous stay in ward 5 where all staff were vigilant, friendly and pleasant.

A truly horrendous experience.

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Response from University Hospital Of North Durham

Thank you for providing feedback on your mother's experience on Ward 6 at the University Hospital of North Durham.

We are very sorry to hear that you were unhappy with her care and experience on this occasion and your comments have been forwarded to the Ward Team to review and they have provided a response for you.

The staff are disappointed you were not satisfied with the care your mother received as they do put the care of older people at the centre of everything they do on the ward.

Hand hygiene is taken very seriously on the ward, as it is across the Trust, and this is reflected in the good hand hygiene audit results (between 95 and 100%).

The Ward Team would be very happy to arrange to meet with you and discuss the concerns you have raised in further detail. If you feel this would be useful please contact the Trust's Patient Experience Team on 0800 7835774 and we will liaise with the ward to try to arrange this for you, mentioning this is in connection with a comment left on NHS Choices.

If you would prefer to contact us by e-mail, our address is patient.experience@cddft.nhs.uk

The Trust is grateful for all feedback, positive or negative, as it means we can better understand what is important to our patients.

Thank you for leaving your comments on NHS Choices.'

Patient Experience Team

County Durham and Darlington NHS Foundation Trust

Tel: 0800 7835774