"Without any comfort or reassurance for hours"

About: Worcestershire Royal Hospital / Accident and emergency

(as a relative),

My 90 year old mother- in-law spent 9 hours in the department following a serious car crash  where she was a passenger. Apart from the usual interminable waits for doctors and scans she was denied a pillow ("we don't have any") and wasn't offered a drink.  When I asked for some water for her I was handed a bottle. I was denied a paper cup ( "we don't have any"). This lady has never drunk from a bottle in her life and her extreme frailty meant she couldn't even lift it up. Only by chance did she end up with a sheet to cover her. There were no chairs for relatives to sit, near  at all. 

The noise in the middle of the night, feet away, when she was in pain and I was trying to get her to calm  down and  sleep was appalling. All of it coming from staff talking, laughing and shouting at the tops of their voices to each other. None of this chatter seemed to do with patient care. 

When nurses  weren't taking an observation or undertaking a specific task they chatted to each other. I never saw one approach patients to comfort, reassure or simply to hold a hand and ask if someone was okay.

I observed one very elderly lady, after her family had to leave, lie on a bed under a strip light alone, conscious, with no blanket to cover her, entirely without any comfort or reassurance for hours with nurses chatting and laughing to each other a few feet away.   These nurses were not busy. 

I saw a senior nurse spend about four hours sitting in front of a computer screen updating the patients stats for the day. A complete waste of a qualified experienced nurses time. Two clerks sat nearby chatting. 

All the doctors were efficient and helpful taking time to explain. 

Responses

Response from Worcestershire Royal Hospital

Martha,

Thank you for leaving us your feedback; please accept our sincere apologies for the delay in this acknowledgement. I’m very sorry to hear about your experience and that of your mother-in-law; if you can let us know in what department and when this occurred, and if possible your mother-in-law's name, we will share your comments with the responsible management team for this service. If you wish to discuss this further or would like us to look into your concerns in detail, please contact us at wah-tr.PET@NHS.net or by telephone on 0300 123 1733; please provide your name, contact information and quote the reference number 42569.

Regards,

Patient Experience Team

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