"Never again Crownhill Ward"

About: Derriford Hospital

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After a chaotic admittance to Crownhiill ward I eventually received a bed in mid afternoon for elective surgery for partial lung removal the following day. Post op my first awareness in recovery was a nurse saying words to the effect that they needed to get rid of my as she was off at 5pm. Sure enough 10 past 5 - I was back in the ward. The folowing day a bowl was slapped down on my trolly. I thought a proceedure was to follow so left it - nope! I was supposed to wash with it. Unaware of this I ttried to brush my teeth. This I did but realised too late - nothing to rinse my toothbrush with. I used a beaker of water and was then called 'disgusting' by the nurse - later that morning she sarcastically asked me - 'Live alone do you Mrs A...'?' as I am a 68 year old widow - the answer had to be yes. I felt that in general I had the most indifferent and indeed unkind 'care' from the majority of the nursing staff, especially in the first few days when I felt so ill and helpless. 3-4 days later by this time in tears as I stank of sweat and plastic one nurse helped me into a shower while I sat on a chair under the flow - what bliss to actually feel clean again . My strong advice is to have your family visit as often as possible as soon as possible post op. They can help you - the nurses will not! I told my family to stay away for the first few days - what a huge mistake that was. I have never, ever felt so alone and vulnerable. am also deaf and each day, without fail, most nurses had a conversation with my sink rather than face me so I could see what was said. There was a fresh dribble of blood all down my trolly on admission - there was the same blood dribble still there 10 days later! I could go on but suffice to say - Never, ever again Crownhill. No probs at all withthe doctor - just most of his ward nursing staff let him down - badly!

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Response from Mary Anderson, Senior Quality Facilitator, Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust

Good evening and thank you for your posting. I am so sorry to read that you had such a distressing time during your brief time in recovery and your stay on Crownhill Ward. I would very much welcome the opportunity to speak to you to ensure that your concerns are thoroughly investigated and appropriate action taken to ensure that this does not happen again.

My direct dial number is 01752 439751 but if I am out of the office, I can be contacted via the PALS team 01752 439884 and the PALS team will always get a message to me if you would be happy to let them have a telephone number where I may contact you.

I do hope you will feel able to speak to me and on behalf of the Trust, may I apologise for your very upsetting experience. Hoping to hear from you soon.

Best wishes


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