"Let down by Lexden Ward"

About: Colchester General Hospital

Everyone who looked after us before, during and immediately after I gave birth were amazing. I felt really relaxed and looked after. It was a 25 hour labour so we saw quite a few people due to shift changes and every single one was brilliant and a credit to the NHS.

When we left to go up to the Lexden Ward we were excited, incredibly tired but still at ease. When we got up to Lexden Ward, everything changed. The staff were unhelpful, quite rude and I felt a bit lonely. I was put in a room on my own which was great but I did not think it would mean I would be forgotten about.

I asked for water three times and it was two hours before I got my first drink. My father went to the reception desk when he came to visit and moaned so I eventually got a drink, however, to be forgotten about 3 times was a tad incompetent. Anyone who came into my room spoke about breastfeeding and literally nothing else! Being a first time mum, you have loads of questions and although I have a good network of friends and family, there are still things you want the ‘experts’ to tell you and reassure you of. After being awake for about 39 hours I was tired but yet again, someone came in to talk about breastfeeding about 9:30pm, they were a breastfeeding specialist and gave me some tips and left me to it, informing me that they would be back to check up on me. At about half 10 my baby and I had a snooze as nobody came back to check on us. At 5am we were woken up my a midwife asking why I never called anyone to come and help? The midwife made out that it was my fault that they didn’t come and check on me and made me feel useless. Later on that day, the specialist came back to see how I got on the night before. When I explained to them what had happened they told me that they asked someone at the desk to check on me after about half an hour, needless to say, we were as disappointed as each other.

We eventually asked to be discharged at 5:30pm the next day, I just wanted to get home where I was comfortable and have my family around me who can help better than these ‘experts’. The member of staff who was doing our discharge said that they were doing a handover but would make them aware of how long we had been waiting and ask them to see to us first. Someone came to see us about an hour later to say that they will be with us soon. It was then decided that they need to do some tests which should have been done beforehand but were not, they would need to see if a paediatrician was around to do this. We eventually left about 10pm to go home and I really hope I do not have to go back there again. The whole ward seemed a shambles.

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Response from Colchester General Hospital

I am very concerned to read your feedback. Please would you be able to contact Jane Lerwill 01206 742936 to discuss further and to undertake an investigation into your poor experience.

Kind regards

Tammy Diles

Head of Patient Experience


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