"Convenient and excellent nurse led minor injury..."

About: Altrincham General Hospital

Convenient: Quiet Saturday afternoon.

Parked in nearby supermarket.

Checked in and had to wait only 10 minutes.

Excellence: Computer system had retained my records from previous hospital contact.

Nurses worked well as a team.

One took advice from another and formed a consensus on treatment I was comfortable with.

The senior nurse performed some fairly delicate minor surgery that could have been painful but was done well.

The treatment took only about 10 minutes and the team were all very professional and nice to deal with.

Suggested improvements:

(1) Top of my hate list with almost all brand new tax payer funded NHS facilities – stop putting laminated posters on the walls with blue tac and sticky tape.

It ruins the décor.

Notices are no longer noticeable when they cover the walls like confetti.

Most of the inane signs are condescending to the clients and usually repeated unnecessarily repeated on multiple walls sometimes repeated on the same wall.

Each use of a laminated poster facility should be approved individually by the CEO of the unit to prevent such shabby communication to the public.

The waiting area had a large flat screen tv which could be used for messages.

Placing a shabby poster on a wall asking clients if they have first reported to reception is poor.

The official signs on display on entering the area should direct the public how to proceed.

Asking the question as posed in the poster is the equivalent of saying to the clients “Are you stupid?”.

(2) The minor injury clinic does not warrant a full time receptionist to book people in.

The poor receptionist was bored out of their mind with the low volume of clients.

It is a false economy to spare the clinicians this work (presumably because they cost more than a non clinical staff member).

It would be more efficient and better use of resources to have a clinician to do check in and multitask with some clinical duties in between checking in clients.

(3) Consider self check in.

90% of clients should be able to handle a computer questionnaire without assistance.

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Response from Amy McCawley, Patient Experience Team, Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Thank you for your kind comments regarding your experience at the Altrincham Minor Injuries Unit. Our staff aim to ensure that all patients attending the unit have a good experience and receive a high standard of care and treatment in a timely manner.

We would like to thank you also for taking the time to share your observations and ideas for our consideration. It is our aim to provide a service and environment which is pleasing for our patients and visitors and we have considered your suggestions.

1. We can understand how poster saturation must appear to hospital visitors and have been informed by the Minor Injuries Unit Manager that a notice board has been ordered to enable all notices to be displayed in one area. The poster which asks patients to book in was developed in response to several patients not being aware of the process and waiting for long periods without being seen. It is most definitely not our intention to cause offence. Your suggestion to use the television screen to inform patients has been passed to the Lead Nurse who is reviewing the CMFTV information. Televisions are used for sharing patient information as well as health education and other pertinent information throughout the Trust.

2. Your observation regarding the receptionist at Altrincham Hospital has been noted and will be referred for consideration to the Directorate Manager for Altrincham Hospital. Attendances at the Minor Injuries Unit tend to fluctuate and the unit sees a wide variety of patients with varying severities of clinical presentations. The Minor Injuries Unit Manager has explained that she would not want to put patient safety at risk by nursing staff not performing their clinical duties as a priority or have patients waiting to book in to be seen. However, we are always open to new ideas and will work with clerical colleagues to deliver the best possible service to patients.

3. Although self-check in is used in some hospital setting I.e. outpatients, due to the nature of the injuries patients may attend the Minor Injuries Unit with it is felt that it would not be appropriate.

We would like to thank you for your suggestions and assure you that we will be reviewing and acting upon your suggestions where appropriate. We trust that you have made a full recovery from your injury.

It is difficult to respond to all the posts in a full way often because of a lack of detailed information, therefore if you would like to discuss this with us in more detail, please feel free to contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service on 0161 276 8686 or by e-mailing pals@cmft.nhs.uk

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