"Great when they are there, terrifying when they..."

About: Royal Berkshire Hospital

Arrived with suspected sepsis and was really quickly taken through, given antibiotics, given a blood test and swabs for influenza.. and then wheeled into a side room in A&E where I lay for 7 hours with the trolley barriers up and the cannula tucked through them, the call button far out of reach, unable to move or do anything but cry out when I needed help and vaguely try to defeat the light with a sleep mask (no chance). The doctor who responded was very helpful and responded quickly when I could call to them but it was still a horrible experience. Oddly, just after that another nurse abruptly disconnected everything and said I could go walk up and down the ward which I was incredibly grateful for.

I was then taken through to a side room in an inpatient ward which was much more comfortable. Unfortunately, it was very hot, but I didn't notice because I was having flu chills - and actually being in a hot room is a really bad idea for flu chills so I felt terrible most of the night, although again they did respond to me very quickly (mostly calling for water and pee bottles). When the morning shift came on things were much better and I got some paracetamol, antibiotics and breakfast and the heat sorted out and then just sort of ended up lying there comatose because I was exhausted. The nurse who seemed to be in charge of the room was very friendly and responsive although they did sometimes have trouble understanding what I was saying (and I later found out they had been on shift for 12 hours) I was then told I could be discharged with homecare for flu since the sepsis had apparently either been dealt with or not existed - fair enough.

So everyone did their best and took an interest but everything just seemed to be slightly overloaded and discongruous and when I was fragile that was really frightening.

Story from NHS Choices

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Response from Royal Berkshire Hospital

Thank you for leaving feedback on your recent visit to the Royal Berkshire Hospital. We are sorry that you felt isolated in your room and that the call bell was not within reaching distance for you. The matron for A&E will speak to the staff to ensure that intentional rounding is carried out (seeing and observing the patients at regular intervals to provide care and monitoring) and to ensure that call bells are within reach.

We are pleased to read that your immediate care was delivered swiftly and timely however. We have been very busy of late but this is no excuse for you feeling frightened at times and staff not being available to support you. We hope you are recovering well but if you would like to discuss your experience further please do not hesitate to contact us via our Patient Relations Team on 0118 322 8338 or email talktous@royalberkshire.nhs.uk

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