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Relative of West Essex



Lack of care around discharge planning puts patients at risk

Following a fall my father was admitted to hospital with a fracture neck of femur. He is the main carer for my mother who has a long term condition and associated cognitive impairment. She had also had a fall the previous week which resulted in a nasty wrist fracture. While dad was in hospital mum lived with me but they were both adamant that as soon as he was discharged she would go back home. During the operation dad aspirated which resulted in his having aspiration pneumonia which set back his recovery and needed to stay in hospital a couple of days longer than would normally be necessary. He was also having heparin injections every day. Dad had barely got out of bed and had certainly not tried any stairs before he was told he was being discharged. I was unable to get to the hospital to speak to the staff myself about arrangements for his discharge but told him to ask for an OT home assessment and to be referred to one of the integrated care teams as he would need raised toilet seat etc. and help at first with meals, washing and changing his TED stockings and his staples removed. He told me he had asked about someone to to his stockings and had been told that they had referred to the physio who would visit on Monday (this was Thursday) change his stockings and that he should attend his GP surgery to have his staples removed. Physios do not, as a rule, change TED stockings! Either the staff on that ward have no understanding of community physio or they were lying. Either is unacceptable. Before I could do anything more I had a phone call from him asking to be picked up as they had discharged him. He was sent home with no information, no referral to anyone other than the community physio. He was expected to either leave mum alone, or somehow manage to get both of them to the GP surgery to have his staples removed. No information was given as to when this should be done. The weekend was very difficult as mum and dad insisted mum go home. I asked dad if he had been given any mediations, etc. to bring home but it wasn’t until the Saturday that he remembered a bag with what he thought was a ‘something to wash the wound out with’. The ‘something’ was in fact two clexane injections that he should have had on the Friday and Saturday. I am just disgusted at the attitude of the hospital staff to planning my father’s discharge. There was no interest in his home situation, a total disregard for how his medical needs would be met. Nothing. No care! They didn’t appear to actually like people or the work. They certainly didn’t like their chats around the nurses station being interrupted. The obsession with everyone having degrees + all the further qualifications the NHS pay their staff to get, often taken by staff in order to progress their careers, not because it will actually help them be better nurses, has not just been ineffective but actually counter productive. You don’t need a degree to be a good nurse. In order to be a good nurse you must actually want to do the work and then do it to the best of your ability. I don’t think that’s asking too much. he had been discharged with anything

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