"My experience of he Royal Derby"

About: Royal Derby Hospital

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My elderly mother was admitted there on Saturday. Up to the point of admission the standard of care from the paramedic and ambulance staff had been 5 Star ++. This unfortunately ended when she had the misfortune of being admitted.

Here are the little things that you will witness:

Once admitted - My mum was moved around (understandable) and eventually ended up on a ward. When I came to visit her I was directed to the ward by the reception staff (good) and when I got to the ward I approached a member of staff and explained I was here to see Mrs X. The staggering response was - You will need to ask someone else, I don't know who she is. The correct response baring in mind she was indulging in idle chit-chat with another member of staff might have been - Leave it with my and does anyone know which bed Mrs X is in? I did this an managed to find mum all by myself.

I asked mum if she had anything to eat all day and she replied no (10.00am - 6.00pm). She had been moved around all day and someone had appeared to forget the fundamentals - ie give the patient some food and water for gods sake. Anyway she tucked into my bar of fruit and nut and seemed happy enough.

Mum was a bit fed up and bored, a lot of waiting around (understandable). She asked if I had a pen to do the crossword and I said unfortunately I did not. Don't worry I said, I am sure someone at the reception will let you have the use of one. I went to reception and asked the nurse if my mum could have the use of a pen and the simple reply was No! I thought it must be a health and safety issue but know, the nurse said she loses too many by giving them to patients so she has stopped. I think giving a frightened old lady a pen to keep her mid off things my be seen as an act of care and compassion. Too much to expect from a Nurse??

Next day mum was moved to another ward (understandable). Main reception were good and pointed me in the right direction. I was in fairness outside of visiting hours and I needed to catch a pre booked train get back to my home in London. I get to the ward and the door is locked. I see a buzzer and it has a notice that say, Buzz if door is locked. I buzz and look through the glass panel and the woman (i later find to be receptionist) does not even look up. After a second buzz and a genuine 4 minute wait she opens the door with a tut - What!!!

How are thing going I ask my mum, not good and she tells me the diagnosis is not good at all. She then tells me that she had witnessed domestic staff using used bed sheets as dusters - As a non medical person, even I know this is not good! She tells that the Consultant told her that some specialist people will be talking to her later today - They never came!!!!

Mum was nurse for 40 years in the NHS. She did not have a degree, she cleaned, cared and did what she could to help patients during their hours of need - How the world has changed.

Story from NHS Choices

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Response from Royal Derby Hospital

Thank you for taking the time to tell us about the experience of you and your mum, and for your positive comments about the reception staff on the first ward.

Some of the experience you had is clearly not what we would expect. We always strive to provide the highest quality of care, which includes meeting the basic and fundamental needs of patients and their families. We are also very clear about the standards and behaviours our staff must demonstrate. As a Trust our ‘CARE’ values (Care, positive Attitude, Respect & Equality) are at the centre of what we do every day.

There are a wide range of improvements we have put into place, and continue to develop, to improve the quality of care for people who use our services. We are also asking people about their hospital experience on a regular basis using the ‘Family and Friends’ test, which helps us to understand more about patient experiences so we can improve where we need to. From your feedback it is clear that the experience you and your mum had was not to the standard you would want and as such we would very much like to extend the opportunity for you to come and talk with a member of the Trust senior management team so that we can ensure that this forms part of our continued work to improve experiences for everyone who uses our services, and to give you our assurances that we take all feedback from patients, carers and their families seriously.

If you contact our PALs service and they will be happy to arrange this. Please call them on Freephone 0800 7837691.

Kind regards

Richard Brown, Assistant Director of Patient Experience

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