"Uncaring treatment at Treliske"

About: Royal Cornwall Hospital (Treliske) / Urology

(as the patient),

Our mother, was admitted to the Medical Admissions Unit with high INR levels. Though 85 years, she was a very proud and private lady, profoundly deaf in one ear with an obvious hearing aid in her “good” ear. She was subsequently moved to Grenville Ward where a “cancer process” was diagnosed. She died on the ward in the early hours of 29 October. Her treatment in the final weeks of her life in Trelikse was abysmal. Medical Admissions Unit Our mother asked to go to the toilet. When ward staff were advised by her son, he was told she had just been, that she kept wanting the toilet then not going, and not to be concerned as she “was wearing a pad anyway”. She was subsequently diagnosed with urinary tract infection. The concerning thing was that the staff comments were literally shouted across the ward at visiting time, with no apparent regard to patient privacy or dignity. Grenville Ward During her 4 weeks on this ward the hospital failed our mother in a number of ways in our opinion, including: Being found on several occasions cold to the touch, and complaining of being cold seated in a chair, at 2.30 pm with several windows on the ward wide open wearing just a night dress with no dressing gown, spectacles, hearing aid or dentures fitted so she effectively couldn’t eat, hear or see anything going on around her. Being found on several occasions with her hands, night clothes, bedding and walking frame badly and very visibly soiled with excrement. A distinct lack of information being volunteered by staff, despite the fact that at least one family member was at the hospital daily from 2.30pm – not least when our mother was very hard of hearing and had little memory to allow her to recount to us what she had been told. In our experience information was very rarely offered or made available unless one physically sought it out. Subject of irregular 1500ml water intake restriction with charts never accurately completed, and on one occasion filled with a large question mark by the staff as the morning shift had not entered anything at all. Similarly, food charts not completed so we were unaware of what she had consumed (if anything) for breakfast or lunch, given the fact that she was diabetic and blood sugar levels had to be monitored. Suffering as many as 4 or 5 falls on the ward, on the last occasion causing a considerable swelling and bruising to her right brow when she was left unaccompanied on a commode, despite the fact that at that stage she was in a cot bed due to her mobility problems and had suffered falls. Her son being advised to purchase specific medication from a Chemist shop for the nursing staff to administer for the treatment of cystitis as the hospital pharmacy didn’t have it.
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