"This experience has taught us ..."

About: Stafford Hospital

(as the patient),

What I liked

This experience has taught us never to use Stafford Hospital again.

What could be improved

Staff attitude was very poor. Bedside manner and tact when delivering bad news was non-existent.

My wife needed surgery following a miscarriage, and we were told that no "non life threatening" surgery was being performed due to extreme weather conditions.

We were advised by a private clinic that this surgery was essential, due to risk of infection. The doctor at the private clinic was shocked that we had been sent away with painkillers, and told to return in 2 weeks.

Anything else?

Myself and my wife went to Wolverhampton hospital where we treated with the greatest care, and they were able to perform the op, despite the snow outside. What makes all the difference is the staff at Wolverhampton.

Stafford hospital is 5 minute drive from our house, and Wolverhampton hospital is 45 minutes. I will never visit Stafford hospital again.

Everyone I have spoken to has a sorry tale to tell about their experience with Stafford hospital. From poor care levels, to blunders that almost cost people their lives.

We decided to use Stafford hospital, thinking that all you hear are the bad things. Well, believe the hype, as it is all true.

We will never use Stafford hospital again. No amount of handwashing stations will clean up the deep rooted problems they have there.

My advice, if you are from Stafford, is to travel further to North Staffs, or to Wolverhampton.

Those hospitals will take you on, even though you are from a different area, and don't let them tell you otherwise.

I didn't get the impression that this is a problem with the NHS itself, just the staff at Stafford hospital.

Story from NHS Choices

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Response from Stafford Hospital

We would like to extend an unreserved apology that the Trust failed to provide the care that you expected. We do not believe that the extreme weather conditions were the reason that the surgery was not carried out and apologise that you were given incorrect information. Like many hospitals across the country, during January a number of wards were closed to new admissions due to an outbreak of the winter vomiting bug, norovirus. This combined with the impact of the cold weather (for instance an increase in the number of fractures) meant that unfortunately the Trust had to cancel non-life threatening surgery.

The way in which miscarriages are dealt with has also changed recently. In the past, women with a diagnosed miscarriage were automatically offered a surgical procedure, although they may have had to wait 2-3 days in hospital for a slot on the emergency theatre lists. It was thought that surgery was safer and had less risk of infection than letting the patient miscarry normally. However, recent research has shown that it is safer for women to be allowed to miscarry normally at home rather than undergo surgery. The complications with infection, damage to the uterus and problems with future fertility are increased at least two fold in women who have surgery. In line with best practice we no longer admit patients for surgery unless there are other indications such as heavy bleeding.

We would like the opportunity to investigate your concerns further on a personal basis and would be grateful if you would contact our Advice Centre on 01785 230811.

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