"Poor experience of visiting a patient"

About: Monklands District General Hospital / Clinical haematology

(as a friend),

Arrived at ward 16 in Monklands District General Hospital. Approached nurses station to enquire which room the patient we were there to visit was in. Four nurses were sitting.

We were told which room he was in, however told that it is a very STRICT rule that only two visitors are allowed to a bed and since there was four of us we said we had no issue going in two groups. We were then told he already had two visitors, so we had to wait. We had no issue with this either.

We then moved away but were told in a condescending tone that we could not wait there as the nurses would be discussing patients and it would be inappropriate for us to be able to hear them. We were informed there was no waiting area in the ward so we would have to wait outside the doors to the entrance of the ward, but we would be called in when the patient's current visitors left. We did not have an issue with this and went to stand outside the ward doors. One of the nurses acknowledged that it "was a pain".

Forty minutes later when we had seen multiple visitors leave but had still not been called in, one of us went back in to the ward to see the patient and simply wave and give him his present and say we had come but had to leave. Upon doing this we saw he was lying by himself. No visitors.

His visitors had left half an hour ago but we had not been informed that we could come in as we had been told we would be. Two of us then went in to speak to him for five minutes and then swapped with the other two who also spoke to him for five minutes. We then had to leave as we had been there close to an hour by now and had other time commitments. As we were leaving one of the nurses said to us again that she knew it had been "a real hassle".

We did not have an issue with not being able to go in as a group of four.

We did not have an issue with having to wait outside the ward whilst his other visitors finished.

We DID have an issue with the manner in which we were spoken to.

We DID have an issue with the fact we were left standing outside waiting to be called in once the other visitors had left, only to find out they had left half an hour ago and no nurse had stuck to her word and come and let us know.

We DID have an issue with the fact that we were at the hospital for over an hour but only able to see the patient for 10 minutes.

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Response from Margaret Kelly, Service Manager, Cancer Services, Monklands Hospital, NHS Lanarkshire

picture of Margaret Kelly

Dear ConcernedVisitor

Thank you for taking the time to let us know about your recent visit to Ward 16 in Monklands to visit a patient. Please accept our sincere apologies for this experience – this falls far below our expectations for relatives and friends visiting our ward.

This must have been very disappointing to all of you. We have shared your experience with our staff on the ward today. On this occasion our communication was unacceptable and we are very sorry. To ensure all members of staff are fully aware of their attitudes and behaviors we will continue to raise this at our daily meetings.

We appreciate that visiting times are extremely important for friends and families and the precious time you have together. We failed on this occasion to communicate effectively resulting in a very limited time for you and leaving you with a negative experience.

If you would like to discuss this matter with me further please call 01236 712570.

Thanks again for using your valuable time to raise these concerns with us.

Kind regards


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