"Too many patients or not enough doctors !!! The Maudsley."

About: Inpatient mental health care (national/specialist) South London And Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust / Homeless mental health

(as a parent/guardian),

I have just submitted one account of my daughter's appalling experience since a personal item was stolen from her room on an inpatient Ward at The Maudsley.

This is her experience of her care since being on the ward:

She was admitted in the early hours of one day last week. She was transferred from a & e after taking an overdose. She briefly saw a doctor, and was told a doctor would see her again on Monday. As of Wednesday evening, she has still not seen a doctor - or anyone else for that matter.

When she asked why a doctor hadn't been to see her, she got a curt too many patients in reply!

Excuse me? You have a specific number of beds. I'm guessing you expect full occupancy most of the time. Unless you are putting patients 2 to a bed, how can you have too many patients? What you mean is, you don't have enough doctors!

My questions are : How can a mental health patient be left for 7 days without being seen by a doctor? How do you know that she is being given the appropriate medication? How can you assess her mental or emotional state? What care is she being give?

The answer from our experience is a big fat Zerocare.

My daughter's overwhelming feeling is that absolutely no-one on the ward gives a damn about anything. It feels like they are not mental health professionals. They do not treat the patients as fellow human beings deserving of care and respect. Her (and my) feeling is that the ward (and probably the whole hospital) is nothing more than a cattle holding pen.

In my view The Maudsley should be totally ashamed of itself!

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Response from Lou Hellard, Deputy Director of Clinical Service Delivery - Inpatients and Complex Care, Psychosis CAG, South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust

Dear Anna2212

Thank you for your posting.

I am so sorry that this has been your experience of our services. In the acute wards we would normally aim for a new admission to be seen by a Doctor on the day of admission and then by the consultant within 3- 4 days of admission so I am sorry that this was not your experience.

It would be useful to know which area you are referring to within the Maudsley site. You could contact me on email lou.hellard@slam.nhs.uk or you could call me directly on 0203 228 2917. I may not be available at that time but my secretary Fi will be able to take your details and I will call you back as soon as possible.


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