"Doctors helpful and professional. Wards dirty,..."

About: St George's Hospital (Tooting) (London)

What I liked

Triage worked efficiently on arrival in A&E (Although we were the only people there at 5am on a Friday morning).

Seen quickly when initially taken through in A&E.

Doctors who visited me on the ward once a day and in A&E were professional, helpful, friendly and answered my questions.

Ward split into three and each section is single sex.

What could be improved

In A&E

* Asked to rate pain with a number. Nurse held up 6 fingers and suggested 6 so I agreed. Dr said this meant I wasn't allowed any pain relief even though I was over due on pain relief prescribed for an operation 4 days before. Completely arbitrary system with no flexibility.

* No blanket.

On Florence ward

* No ice to chew or ice packs available even though this is nhs reccomended treatment.

* Only one female and one male toilet for the ward.

* Toilets filthy. Covered in urine, faeces, blood. Nurse and cleaner both unhelpful when informed.

* Wards dirty. Blood splatters from previous patient on my curtain. When I informed nurse I had spilled infectious bodily fluid it was cleaned only with a tissue. Cleaner did not move furniture to mop each day and missed many areas around my bed. Tables and other areas not cleaned.

* Windows would not stay open so surrounded by smell of faeces and vomit.

* Nurses often appeared unhelpful, uncaring and irritated.

* Very noisy. I understand some was unavoidable. Some could be fixed e.g. IV machines beep loudly and continuously when finished or if there is an error such as an air bubble. Nurses did not check and turn off sound, sometimes for several hours. Loud voices even at night.

* Nurses didn't follow up on questions and requests at least 3 times. I understand they are very busy but perhaps nurses need to be given notepads to help them.

* Not given pain medication when in pain because I hadn't eaten enough (I had mouth surgery). Not offered alternative pain medication that didn't have to be taken with food, just told off.

* Expected to calculate my height and weight in metric myself. Nurses should be provided with a chart to convert from imperial themselves.

* Another patient had to show me how to find soap, clean pyjamas etc. An information notice would be helpful to give on admission if nurses too busy for this.

Anything else?

Nurses had to deal with some difficult, angry patients when I was there so I understand their difficulties. However a little kindness and time goes a long way with patients who are scared and in pain.

More cleaners are definitely needed.

Story from NHS Choices

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Response from St George's Hospital (Tooting)

Thank you very much for taking the time to comment on your experience at St George’s Hospital. Your kind and constructive comments about A&E will be passed onto the team. Your comments about Florence Nightingale Ward will be passed onto the management and estates and facilities teams. If you would like to receive a personal response to your concerns then please do not hesitate to contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS): pals@stgeorges.nhs.uk or the complaints and improvements department: complaints.compliments@stgeorges.nhs.uk.

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