"The lack of communication was puzzling and disturbing"

About: York Hospital / Urology

(as the patient),

A cystoscopy was carried out under general anaesthetic. The professionals in the theatre were informative, friendly, put me at ease, and evidently carried out the operation successfully.

I woke up at 2 pm in the recovery ward, which was empty except for 2 nurses sitting at computers. We made eye contact, but neither of them spoke to me. or came over. As I felt well and comfortable I was content to wait for the effects of the anaesthetic to wear off, but at 3 pm I asked for information as to what was to happen next, and was told that we were waiting for staff to readjust my pacemaker. They arrived at 3. 30, made the adjustment and left. After a further 20 wordless minutes I was told that there was no need for me to stay overnight at the hospital, and I was wheeled into a ward, different to the one in which I had undressed and left things like dentures, book etc. I was transferred to a bed, was given a call button (three word were uttered), and left. At 5 pm an assistant came with a menu list and gave me an opportunity to choose some food for tea, but there was still no sight of a nurse who could give me some relevant information. As I seemed fit and mobile, I left my bed and went to the nurses station. The information I had to extract from a nurse was fairly basic, but at least I was told that I would indeed be discharged that day. This actually happened at about 8. 45 pm, and at last there was a meaningful conversation about what I should do after being discharged.

I am 89 years old and have had many occasions to be grateful for the excellent, friendly and communicative care I had received at this hospital. The lack of communication I experienced on this occasion was puzzling and disturbing.

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Response from Hester Rowell, Lead for Patient Experience, York Teaching Hospital NHS foundation Trust

We are very sorry to hear about the lack of communication you experienced. This is not what we want to achieve for any patient. We recognise that good communication is vital at all stages of treatment and recovery.

Your comments have been shared with the matron for the recovery ward, who would welcome the opportunity to discuss what happened to you directly with the staff concerned.

To enable her to do this, would you be willing to provide your name and the date of your procedure by contacting our Patient Advice & Liaison Service (PALS) on 01904 726262 or email pals.york@york.nhs.uk

Thank you for taking to time to contact us, and for the positive comments you have also shared about your experience in theatre.

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