"The Accident & Emergency department ..."

About: Southampton General Hospital

(as the patient),

What I liked

The Accident & Emergency department was second to none. I was treated promptly and with respect at all times. The doctors and nurses communicated well and everywhere was clean and tidy.

What could be improved

Nothing could have been any better in the A&E department - it was only when I was actually moved to a ward that things went downhill.

Anything else?

After being taken to a surgical assessment unit I was eventually moved after 4 hours with hardly any contact from the nurses. I was frequently left waiting for pain relief, in some cases for over 2 hours after asking. The nurses were lazy with a poor bedside manner. A lot of the other patients were elderly and clearly distressed by the way in which their needs were consistently ignored. There were no emergencies which cropped up during my stay and some beds were empty, which left no excuse for the poor cleanliness of the ward and the lack of attention given to patients by the staff. At no time was I offered hot drink despite asking several times and the elderly patients were again left waiting. Since no record was being kept of my pain medication, I could easily have overdosed since it was being handed out by nurses (allbeit hours after asking) and then again by the drug trolley which was coming round 3 times a day. All my medical notes were lost for a period of 24 hours which the staff claimed meant doctors were unable to make any assessment on my condition. Lastly, when the lady came round to help the nurses provide clean sheets - they stripped my bed back to find that it had 'CONDEMNED' written in black marker all over it. The nurse still went ahead and tried to change the sheets! When challenged by myself, she said that the rules and regulations were stupid and that they would just re-use it anyway. I refused to get back in the bed until they changed the mattress. I waited 40 minutes. My relatives were so horrified by the conditions when they visited me, they urged me to buy my medication from an online pharmacy and go home to treat myself. Indeed, if I had required an operation I feel sure my brother’s dining room table would have been a cleaner and safer environment to undergo any sort of procedure. Instead of chocolate and grapes I was brought Flash Wipes and Antibacterial gel as ‘get well soon’ gifts. Need I say more.

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Response from Southampton General Hospital

Thanks for taking the time to post this comment. We're sorry to hear you had this mixed experience as we are very concerned with cleanliness and place great importance on treating patients with dignity and respect. We've passed on your feedback to the Emergency Department, Surgery care group and cleaning services. In order for us to follow up in more detail, please contact our Patient Advice and Liaison team on pals@suht.swest.nhs.uk or 023 8079 8498 to help us identify the ward areas involved.

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