Sunday, 23 January 2011

NHS Care?


The last week has brought me to question again the care given at hospitals such as Derriford Hospital. My Nan has been in the Torcross unit at Derriford after suffering a heart attack last Sunday morning. I cannot question the medical staff, from the paramedics who dealt with her at home to the ward staff who have been marvellous, however there is something missing; the number of staff on this high dependency unit have had their number cut from 4 to 3 and with a larger ward and increasing patient numbers they are now working very long shifts with very little breaks.

The other problems seems to be the complete lack of a holistic care package, whilst the technology on the ward is high and their are bleeping nachines everywhere, the lack of staff means that the basic needs of a patient are perhaps not as thorough as they should be. In my opinion for a patient to get well as quickly as possible they need to be eating and drinking as soon as reasonably possible and this just doesn't seem to be high on the priority list. Add to that the fact that someone managed to lose my Nan's false teeth on her third day in hospital further restricting what she can consume.

Despite everything my Nan is slowly on the mend and is currently on Bickleigh ward, again the staff are lovely and are doing their absolute best despite limited staff numbers. I can't believe that once again the government are looking at cuts to these very front line services which will further impinge on the care levels available on these wards.

Add to the equation the many ridiculous health and safety protocols that staff have to follow. For example check out the hilarious health and safety policy implemented by Warrens bakery who have taken over the ground floor cafe at Derriford.

Then there was the laughable issue of me getting a cup of tea to takeaway, 'An Earl Grey' to take out please I asked, a fairly simple request you would think but apparently not, Earl Grey is not available to take away as the water may be a few degrees hotter than the pre made tea in the glass jar on the side. What I can do is buy an earl grey to drink in and then ask for a takeaway cup to pour my earl grey into. I also had to verbally disclaim that I would not burn anyone and would be careful, like I was about to run out of the cafe throwing hot water over the nearest patient! It all seemed a little mad.


Not only have Warrens got away with such ludaris policies they have also ensured that it is now very difficult to buy anything healthy to eat from their establishment, I watched as queues of people, some in hospital dressing gowns bought faux cream ├ęclairs, pasties and meat pies. One obese lady was talking to her partner about her Dad's heart attack whilst purchasing 2 doughnuts and a can of coke for her lunch, not the healthiest choice surely?

Anyway the main thing is that despite her unintended starvation, loss of teeth, heart attack and 2 infections (one being pnueumonia!) she is actually getting better and stronger each day, she is a born fighter and if anyone can get over this then she surely can. Get Well Soon Nan x x

Stay Healthy

Sam x

1 comment:

David said...

Good post Sam - Derriford Hospital has kept my dear old Dad going for years.

I agree on Warrens - the service sucks. I had a black coffee there and asked if they could change it as it was old and burned

I got earache from the female trout behind the counter about it was OK etc etc

Bloody ceremony just to get a coffee - Simple Warrens just change it....

Smokers outside in wheel chairs and dangling wee wee pots resplendent with "pained expressions" want sending home or worse....(better)

I feel so, so sorry for the nurses and junior staff that work so hard for little thanks.

I'm so grateful to them for keeping my Dad alive and to my Dad for being a constant source of amusement to them :)

David