"End of life care following emergency surgery"

About: Royal Stoke University Hospital

My mother was transferred to ward 228 from Stafford Hospital once an Xray showed a fractured neck of femur. We arrived the next day when we were hoping my mother would be able to go for surgery.

Sadly that didn't happen until the following morning due to other circumstances.

I was able to speak to the anaesthetist and explained about moms numerous health issues at the grand old age of 88.

We knew there would be a risk if she had to have a general anaesthetic therefore an epidural was attempted but sadly failed.

As we expected mom had various problems following the surgery and never really regained a fully conscious state. We were able to talk to doctors at this time and were kept in the loop about her condition.

The nursing staff were exemplary. They gave full explanations about moms condition.

She was always really clean, hair combed etc.

Sadly she only lasted another 36 hours but a doctor explained all the end of life care that would be given and was very sympathetic, and had "time" for us. We were able to stay with my mom during her final few hours until she died at 4.30 in the morning.

The staff on duty that night caring for mom were superb.

They were offering us pillows and blankets to ease our comfort, tea and biscuits and when the inevitable happened they were very supportive - one nursing assistant (I think) even gave my nephews fiance a cuddle. I was a nurse for 37 years and prided myself on the standards of care I myself gave but also my staff were expected to do the same.

I would have been proud to have had all the nursing and ancillary staff who cared for my mother, as staff on my own wards.

Story from NHS Choices

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Response from Royal Stoke University Hospital

I am very grateful to you for taking the time to write about your experience, particularly during what must be a difficult time for you and your family.

Please accept my sincere condolences for the loss of your mother.

I have shared your kind words with the staff on Ward 228. The team is proud of the care they deliver and comments like yours are always gratefully received.

Thank you again,

Best wishes

Angela Grocott, Head of Patient Experience.

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