"Muddled, and tlc sadly lacking"

About: St Mary's Hospital (London)

What I liked

The registrar, anaethatist, theatre staff and recovery staff who seemed to be very caring and efficient on the day I was here.

On the ward I was sent to there were a couple of very kind nurses, in particular one nurse who had excellent care skills in handling dementia patients - the majority did not.

What could be improved

I stayed in recovery for several hours because no beds available - moved to ward where there were several empty beds. This ward had a mixture of good staff and quite rude staff who seemed very uncaring at times. Despite saying I felt really sick and weak was told I could go home, however, half an hour later had projectile vomiting and was given an anti-sickness flush. The member of staff did not say what medication he was giving and proceeded to squirt the liquid all over the place - this splashed into my eye and onto my visitor. I had to ask for clean sheets etc which were badly soiled and he brought one of each in a manner which was very reluctant. An elderly patient with dementia was not treated very well by some of the staff despite there being leaflets on the ward saying that staff had training in this. I felt this put stress on myself and the other patients to witness. Only once witnessed a nurse washing hands and then this was was not done properly. There was water left in front of the toilet in a pool which anyone could have slipped on. One member of staff was on the phone when we tried to use the toilet and did not come out for about five minutes so we were trying to find another toilet. Wrong dates was on discharge notes and nothing put about the after effects of the vomiting or treatment given for anti-sickness. Some of the staff just seemed to be totally uninterested in their job. Food arrangements were all over the place with hard cold toast and tepid tea being given as first meal. The ward itself was not as clean as it could be. My bed was made up on the day I was leaving - without being wiped down first and despite being vomited on. I hope that this was changed after! Staff member mentioned it but did not strip bed again. when asked for a fan - staff member said that they had to open the ward for extra beds and did not know where a fan was - my visitor had to go and look for one. What happens when someone has a temperature?

Anything else?

Overall, from pre-op stage to discharge my experience was not the best and I could not wait to get home. There were many complaints by nurses of staff shortages for what I saw as a lack of proper care procedures in both pre op and latter stage. This does not apply to the doctors and post op recovery team who were very good and efficient.

Too many dour looking nurses who ignore requests for something as simple as a glass of water to several requests for TED stockings - items of which are vital. The caring nurses seemed to be in shorter supply but these nurses had an excellent working ethos - why is there such a difference between some of the staff?

Story from NHS Choices

Do you have a similar story to tell? Tell your story & make a difference ››