"Pacemaker fitted .3 nights in ccu..."

About: Royal Bolton Hospital

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Arriving feeling tense to the CCU dept at the hospital the staff did there best to put me at my ease whilst also informing me as they have to about some of the pitfalls to such a procedure, the procedure itself under a local anaesthetic was very painful and a very unpleasant experience which was a surprise and afterwards when my consultant mentioned the possibility of opening the scar up to " scoop out the blood " I asked the nursing staff that I wanted a general anaesthetic and who had the final say about such matters , an answer to which they couldn't give . The rapport between the staff seemed excellent and a good team spirit showed up whilst I observed the different shifts throughout the day, the rapport was in fact a little too good on one occasion with the night shift that usually started toast and a drink then meds around 9pm, on this night they were all enjoying each others company so much that they decided to start at 10...... To wake people up to ask them if they wanted a drink or a slice of toast seems a little strange, but to wake people up to give them a sleeping tablet seems slightly ridiculous , a point to which the staff agreed .

I was made aware of the possible after effects of the operation so that didnt really bother me when I had to stay in longer than thought , the consultant gave me the final say as to wether a further procedure was done or I could go home to give it time to heal which was good and when I questioned one of the meds that I was on he changed it without question.

When it was decided that I should go home they asked me for the bed which I had no problem with at all and so they asked me to wait in the staff waiting room at 2 pm whilst they prepared my tablets for leaving, at 4pm somebody from the ward popped there head around the door asking " are you allright , sorry I forgot all about you " the last bit he said while laughing !, at 6pm I managed to catch the eye enquiring as to how my tablets were coming along as my lift home which is the only way I could get home was coming for me at 7, 20 mins later she arrived with my tablets and went thru them with me, when I enquired about the two items missed off her attitude was one of anger , I informed her that on 1 item they had been using my tablets that I had brought in so I didn't have any, she left in a huff and the next time I saw her was when she passed me in the corridor with her tea, not a word about the missing tablets !.

At 7pm I had to walk back on the ward to ask about my tablets to which they said they had informed a doctor so couldn't tell me when they would come......I had to leave as my lift was waiting outside , she told me how important these tablets were but I also told her that I couldn't get home if I didn't go now, and I had been waiting 5 hours, she asked me if I could come back later that night!,

That last day I felt as if I was an annoyance to them and sullied an otherwise positive visit to the hospital in a very stressful time for me .

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Response from Royal Bolton Hospital

It seems you had a very mixed experience. I’m sorry you found the procedure uncomfortable. This should have been managed better with painkillers and mild sedation. We do aim to discuss this with the patient beforehand and during the procedure if at all possible to minimise discomfort. With regards to general anaesthesia, the nursing staff you asked would not be able to comment as this is a medical decision made on a very individual basis but clearly the sedation you received was inadequate for your needs.I would have expected the nurse to ask the doctor to speak to you about this. I will speak to staff about this so this will not happen in future. The night staff should commence their duties immediately after handover however, patients medications may take until 10pm to be delivered dependent on how the nurse has prioritised the care to patients. We do aim to have patients settled in bed as soon as they wish, so again, although we tend to keep a routine of tea and toast before bed, this can be at whatever time the patient requests. We do often have to utilise the beds of patients that are to be discharged for emergency patients. We only do so when the doctor has confirmed discharge and has made plans for medication dispensing. Sometimes there is a delay in this process depending on how busy pharmacy are on that given day and I apologise for this delay. We would never ‘forget’ about the patients in our care whether in a bed or in a waiting area and I apologise that you felt this way. We always aim to keep in regular contact with our patients and provide refreshments as we would if they were in a bed area. It is unfortunate that medications took so long to be dispensed and I appreciate you should not have had to make alternative travel arrangements due to our error. No patient is ever an annoyance to us and again I’m sorry you were made to feel that way. We really appreciate when patients understand our pressures to create beds for other patients however this should never be at the expense of another patient's experience. As I cannot identify from your comments what date you were in hospital I am unclear which staff where involved in your care. If you would like to discuss your concerns in more detail please contact the Matron for Cardiology on 01204 390144.

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