I was a patient at the Royal Hallamshire hospital cardiology unit with chest pains. The best thing about how I was treated was the kindness and concern of all the staff.
However, I did not like the mixed ward – it was embarrassing and upsetting. I am a male patient and a female patient was getting in and out of bed and I saw more than I should have. It was embarrassing for me and my wife.
I also found it very upsetting that I had to lie in a bed all night next to a lady who had died. I could not sleep.
When I was having breast surgery I had 2 nights in a general surgical ward which had male and female patients. I didn’t like it especially when the health care assistant left the door open when I was on the comode and a male patient walked past. I can see no benefits of mixed sex wards for the patient.
My concern is that hospitals have become far too big and impersonal.
Whilst some of them are indeed filled with ‘state of the art’ equipment, the very fact of their size allows a larger number of people to be in the same place complete with various viruses and bacteria – surely that increases the risk of cross infection? Large hospitals are also more difficult to keep scrupulously clean.
When we had smaller hospitals dotted around the districts, naturally there weren’t so many people contained in them or visiting them so this would keep cross infection to a minimum. It also made them easier to manage and maintain on all levels, including hygiene.
I’ve also been in large hospitals where relatives were spending their last days in mixed sex wards, surrounded by bedside TVs, bleeping monitors and computers, yet the broken sink beside their bed remained unrepaired and leaking huges puddles over the floor at the bedside. We asked several times for something to be done about the puddle on the floor because we actually had to sit with our feet in it while our mother was dying.
A nurse arrived a long time later and threw some hospital bedding on the floor to soak up the water. Meanwhile, the computers continued to bleep and the nurses continued to be busy.
The NHS has a lot going for it, but computers aren’t what heal people. Cleanliness, hygiene, promptness of treatment, genuine care and consideration for the individual goes a long way towards the healing process.
In December of last year, I was admitted to ward 54 of the Queen’s Medical Centre in Nottingham with breathing problems. The standard of care there was good . One of the best things was being helped by the nursing staff to have a bath, as this is something which I can no longer manage on my own.
The only change I would have made is to place patients on single-sex wards, as I did not like being on a mixed ward.
Last month, I was admitted to the Queen’s Medical Centre in Nottingham with general breathing problems. I was very happy with the standard of medical and nursing care which I received, as I felt that I was treated with respect and with consideration.
The only thing I disliked was having to be placed on mixed wards – the situation makes me feel a little embarrassed, as I’m sure it does many other people as well.
I was admitted for keyhole surgery to remove my gall bladder. I received very good care. Before the operation the anaesthetist and the surgeon Mr Wyman both came to see me to explain what would happen. After surgery I was monitored every hour, and Mr Wyman came to check on me. My operation went well. However, I was not happy about being on a mixed sex ward. There were women in my bay but I could hear men in the next bay and could hear everything. I knew they would be able to hear my conversations with nursing staff about personal things and was not happy about that. I did not like sharing toilets with men. After my operation I felt very vulnerable laying in bed wearing a flimsy theatre gown that could fall open, as I knew that male patients could walk past the bay. Although I was in pain, I made sure to put my pyjamas on as soon as possible to make sure that I was fully covered.
I would recommend this hospital apart from the mixed sex wards.
I was a patient on ward 18 at the Barnsley District General Hospital with chest pains. The nursing staff were very good, working under difficult conditions. The Doctors could have been better though – they didn’t have much time for the patients, and they made the other staff more stressed, which didn’t help matters.
The worst thing about my experience was having to stay on a mixed ward – this made me feel upset and embarrassed, because it seemed undignified.
I would like to thank the nursing staff in ward 18 for the kindness and care.
I was surprised that mixed sex wards are still in operation. The Nursing Staff you could not fault,they were excellent.
Cleanliness of the hospital was poor the bathroom definitely was short of a good clean. What did upset me was that a few days after being discharged I received a letter from the hospital addressed to me, on opening it I discovered I had been sent another patients assessment form, I phoned the hospital and asked to be put through to the ward I was on and was told it was a patient who had been on the same ward and was asked to return it to them.
This was a serious breach of Patient Confidentiality, There was also a sick note enclosed with my name and nothing else on it and not signed by a Doctor or dated. clearly some other patients details had been put on my file but I am wonderering if some-one else had received some document belonging to me.
What could be improved
Thorough cleaning of the hospital and the cups that the soup is served in throwing away they look so old I never touched the soup, just looking at them made me feel sick.
Get rid of mixed sex wards.
The mixed sex wards are utterly disgraceful. My elderly mother cannot sleep for men snoring and the experience creates a total loss of dignity that is hardly conjucive to recovery.
There is no excuse for such treatment of patients. They should be entitled to privacy and dignity.
What could be improved
Clean single sex wards staffed by competent professionals where patients are not terrified of catching MRSA.
I went to Nottingham City Hospital in March and spent 2 days on Edward ward, 2 days on Fraser ward, 2 days on the coronary care unit and 10 days on Gillies ward. I was treated for shortage of breath, very weak and unable to eat due to secondary breast cancer. Everything was explained clearly to me and I was made to feel comfortable about asking questions. This was the best bit. But I do not like mixed sex wards and I think this could be made better. The food was better than I expected but I was disappointed to find the porridge was cold on Gillies ward. I would like to thank the doctors and nurses on the coronary care unit. Doctors Chan, Sayer and Bell from the oncology department and Linda Winterbottom and finally Macmillan the breast care nurse.