Monday, 27 June 2016

Online feedback - weekly roundup

By Sarah Kennedy.

Patient Experience Officer.

Patient feedback is a great way to say ‘thanks’ to our staff as well as a vital part of how we learn and improve when we fall short/things don’t go as they should.

With Patient Opinion and NHS Choices it’s quick and easy to share your experience. Alternatively, you can tell us how we did by sending us a tweet to @nottmhospitals

Here are a few of last week’s comments.

Several attempts were made by us to find out what the delay was as there were patients who had arrived after my mother and were being seen before her. Reception and nursing staff ignored my mother’s request for an update on when she would be seen.

Staff were brilliant, I was seen and sorted in a friendly and professional manner. If you are unfortunate enough to visit A&E, from my experience, you are assured of an excellent standard of care that will (hopefully) see you on your way home.

Absolutely all the staff were fantastic- friendly and caring, professional but approachable. Nothing was too much trouble for anyone, from the permanent nights porter to the surgical team.
I met a Rumanian Auxiliary, a Portuguese nurse, a N.Z Radiologist - examples of very positive immigration, I encountered from a personal angle.

I'd like to thank all the staff who cared for me - the NHS staff are its best asset.

I ask them how long I must still wait and they said 6 people still are front of you it is mean no one of them was not served yet so I leave there with severe pain. It was really horrible.

Chose queens medical centre for this pregnancy as it's close to my work place. The person who did my scan was not friendly at all. They became frustrated as they couldn't find what they were looking for during my scan, it was very uncomfortable for me and I made this clear.

Great great great department of radiotherapy the south department is full of hard working staff who treat all with kindness and dignity. Thank you for looking after me.
I went to A&E with uncontrolled epileptic seizures. The Neurologist in A&E was excellent and very professional. They gave me the perfect medication that temporarily stopped the seizures. Unfortunately, I was passed onto a different Neurologist and it went wrong from there. The neurologist I was changed to was extremely rude, absolutely refused to listen and offered no treatment. On the Neurology ward most of the Nurses were also extremely rude and didn't care for me at all, even though I'm physically disabled.

Is there a member of our staff who you feel has gone the extra mile for you? A NUHonours nomination is a great way to say thanks. NUHonours are our annual staff awards. Find out more and submit a nomination here.

Wednesday, 22 June 2016

Online Feedback - Weekly Roundup

By Sarah Kennedy 
Patient Experience Officer

Patient feedback is a vital part of how we learn and improve when we fall short/things don’t go as they should and a way to say ‘thank you’ to our staff.

With Patient Opinion and NHS Choices it’s quick and easy to share your experience. Alternatively, you can tell us how we did by sending us a tweet to @nottmhospitals

Here are a few of last week’s comments.

“Excellent family friendly. Couldn't help me and hubby enough.”

“My Father remained in F20 for nearly three weeks whilst his treatment was conducted and both my Mother and myself visited daily for which we wish to whole heartedly to thank everyone on the ward for their compassion, consideration and caring throughout my father’s stay. My Mother's quote describes Felicity best: 'She's like a member of the family', regularly just popping over for a chat with a smile and a giggle. Always giving us great encouragement (thumbs up). Any time you fancy strawberries & cream you know who to call.”

“Absolutely disgusted my daughter is 5 months old and was told she needs an operation within 6 weeks as its urgent 4 months later we are still waiting.”

“They sent a few other patients to other hospitals such as Lincoln, Queens Medical Centre. After this I decided to take this in my own hands and get myself to Queens Medical Centre, who saw me within an hour of being there. They also had a doctor look into my injury sent me for an X-ray, diagnosis as well as discharging me in three and a half hours. In my experience Queens Medical Hospital has better patient care, better response to other patients coming in with injuries.”

“My husband was told he was first on the list and he was given a gown, compression stockings etc. He then waited in the bed until 3pm and was told to go home with no surgery. I understand that emergencies bumped him off the list but what annoyed us was the fact that he was told at the start of the day that he was first and so I waited with him for the entire day believing he could go in at any point. If he had been told early on that there was a chance he could get bumped that would have helped - I could have gone to work and not lost out on pay.”

“The care he received from both the doctors and nurses was top notch and I can't fault it, but the communication was absolutely appalling and it made the day far more stressful than it needed to be.”

“Our son made a great recovery with excellent results. I can't fault the staff at Queens Medical Centre. The whole experience was a huge challenge for us as parents, however the care our son received in hospital was first class and a credit to the NHS. I hope our experience gives comfort to anxious parents who are going through the same thing.”

“My Grandma was admitted to hospital after being reviewed in the surgical triage unit and then admitted to E15. I cannot praise the nursing team, doctors and Consultant highly enough for the care, compassion and excellent treatment that my grandma and my family received.”

Is there a member of our staff who you feel has gone the extra mile for you? A NUHonours nomination is a great way to say thanks. NUHonours are our annual staff awards. Find out more and submit a nomination here.

Monday, 13 June 2016

Online Patient Feedback - Weekly Roundup

By Sarah Kennedy
Patient Experience Officer

Patient feedback is a vital part of learning, improving and thanking staff.

With Patient Opinion and NHS Choices it’s quick and easy to share your experience. Alternatively, you can tell us how we did by sending us a tweet to @nottmhospitals

Here are a few of last week’s comments.

“I was transferred to QMC from Derby after suffering a brain haemorrhage in May the day after my mother's funeral. The staff nursing, medical and ancillary could not do enough. They were friendly and cheerful and raised spirits in what could have been a very traumatic situation. Keep up the good work guys. You deserve your "centre of excellence" title.”

“One staff member in particular stood out, they were caring compassionate, helpful, re-assuring and so friendly a student nurse I believe. With their positive attitude & bubbly personality they will make a fantastic nurse.”
“We had amazing support from all departments during the birth of our son here at QMC in December of 2015. From the ABC Ward, induction lounge, labour suite, surgical team, A23 and neonatal wards, every person involved was a credit to the NHS. Thank you :)”

“I recently spent a few days in the ACU ward and I don't think my care could have been better. All the staff I met were very considerate and caring. I also witness the effort they put into looking after another patient who was clearly seriously poorly and I was extremely impressed by the level of care he got. It made me feel very proud of the NHS.”

Is there a member of our staff who you feel has gone the extra mile for you? A NUHonours nomination is a great way to say thanks. NUHonours are our annual staff awards. Find out more and submit a nomination here.

Friday, 10 June 2016

Carers Week comes to an end

By Katie Moore. Head of Patient Public Involvement.

As we come to the end of this year’s carers week I’d like to thank everyone who has been involved in helping us to recognise and celebrate carers at NUH and in the community.

Carers do an amazing job day in, day out. At NUH we recognise the importance of their role but also the importance of supporting and involving carers when the person they care for is in hospital.

There are several ways in which we do this, some of which we have looked at this week. One is the About Me document.

The 'About Me' document has been developed to help staff get to know patients and their carers to help us communicate better. There is a section in the document for carers to complete to help us understand how if and how the carer wants to be involved in the patient’s care while in hospital.

We have recently developed, trialled and rolled out the carer’s passport.
The carer’s passport is available to the main carer or carers of patients. The carer's passport can be shown to the ward staff. The staff will then let you visit outside the normal visiting hours, or whenever you need to.
This week we have heard from the neonatal service and the EENT Theatre recovery team who have both developed their own pathways to ensure carers are an integral part of patient care.
This is just a handful of ways NUH supports carers.
This week we would like to thank everyone who has been involved in making carers week a success. Thanks you to Julia Jones for your guest blog about John’s Campaign, which NUH fully supports. Thank you Nottingham Hospitals Charity for funding the Activity Therapy ‘Royal Get Together’ sessions. Thanks also go to the Carers Federation for kindly inviting us to join their events in the community.

Carers Week - A Royal Get Together

By the Activity Therapy team
During carers week we have been visiting wards inviting patients, carers and families to join in a social occasion to celebrate the Queen's 90th birthday. Patients have been using their creative skills and have taken part in reminiscence activities, sharing their memories.
We’re recognising and celebrating the contribution Carers make to their loved ones, inviting them to come together with our patients to socialise, relax and find support and understanding. The event is about inspiring reminiscence and promoting a celebratory atmosphere.

Patients took part in a quiz, made birthday cards and participated in a sing-a-long.We had boxes containing the Queen's personal items, such as a corgi and her handbag with a photo of her grandchildren, a compact and a lace handkerchief. The Queen was also present (in the form of a puppet).

We've had some lovely comments from patients and carers. One patient told us: "It's lovely to have engagement on the ward, it stopped me feeling so poorly."

Another said: "It's really nice to break up the day, I feel like I've achieved something."

A carer said: "This is the brightest I've seen my mum all day".

We visited several wards across QMC and City Hospital and all wards embraced the sessions with cake and refreshments for patients and carers as well as red, white and blue bunting on the wards.

Nottingham Hospitals Charity has funded previous projects for us and this time the kindly funded decorations and Royal Rummage Box props. We are very grateful for their support.

Carers Week - Pre-op visiting

By Jeremy Walker, Theatre Support Worker

In EENT recovery we’ve designed and developed a pre-op visiting plan for patients and their carers.

The visiting plan is designed specifically for patients who, because of specific needs, are unable to access dentistry in the community. Instead these patients come into hospital to have dental work done in our theatres.

Coming into hospital can be frightening for both patients and their carers. The pre-op visiting plan reduces stress for patients and carers and ensures we involve carers throughout the process, making for a better hospital experience.

We visit patients who need extra support on the ward to build a one-to-one relationship. We introduce ourselves to the patient and carers and explain who we are, why we’re there and what we do. We talk about specific needs, what support we can offer and find out about the patient’s worries, fears or concerns, as well as any triggers. Insight from carers is invaluable, particularly if the patient has communication limitations.

It is important to keep the number of staff to a minimum so once we’ve got to know the patient we take them to and collect them from theatre ourselves. This ensures continuity and minimises stress. We ask carers to come with us so they are there until the patient falls asleep and back when the patient wakes up. During the patient’s time in theatre we encourage carers to relax. We take their number and suggest they get a drink, snack or a rest, knowing we will call them to make sure they can be back before the patient wakes up.

All clinical staff are on board and have been very supportive, including anaesthetists, dental surgeons, theatre and recovery staff. 

We’ve had excellent feedback from carers about this visiting plan. Speaking to carers I know how important this is for them and the patient. Some carers dedicate their life to the person they care for and they need to know they can be there at every step to support the person they care for in hospital. 

If you're a carer please visit our dedicated carer's webpage for advice, information and support.

Thursday, 9 June 2016

Carers Week - John's Campaign (guest blog)

By Julia Jones.

I’m writing this blogpost sitting on the floor by my mother’s window. It’s where I spend an increasing amount of time these days.

My mother, June, is 92 and in the later stages of Alzheimer’s. Physically she’s well. Emotionally and practically she’s completely dependent. I choose this place to sit when she’s having a snooze so that when she wakes she can see me or look past me safely to the garden beyond. Mum is very often disorientated and frightened. Waking from sleep can be a muddled, upsetting experience.

My mother is the main reason why, almost two years ago, I said to my friend Nicci Gerrard: “If I were ever going to campaign about anything, it would be to ensure that the carers of people with dementia have the same rights as parents of sick children, to accompany them if they’re admitted to hospital.” Nicci had been telling me about her father, Dr John Gerrard’s, irreversible decline after his unsupported hospital admission in the spring of 2014. He only went in to have his leg ulcers treated but visiting hours were restricted and then there was a noro-virus outbreak.

Would we have allowed ourselves to be turned away if it has been one of our children in hospital? Or course not. Yet when I look at my mother I see someone who is, in many complicated ways, less capable and more vulnerable than many children. I wouldn’t leave her in the hairdressers on her own, let alone a hospital!
“You should do it,” said Nicci’s daughter Anna, who is a junior doctor. “You should do that campaign, both of you.” So, after John Gerrard’s death in November 2014, Nicci wrote a heart-breakingly thoughtful account of his last lingering months which was published in The Observer newspaper. Thousands of readers commented and shared. The Observer said they had never seen a response like it. We realised that so many people had similar experiences – and it was the people apparently “living well” with dementia who seemed to be most at risk.

I felt even more determined that nothing like that should happen to my mother: the progress of the illness itself is bad enough. Why risk such an avoidable harm? I’d chain myself to the bed if I had to!
That was eighteen months ago when Mum could still just about read and write. “Is this about me?” she asked. “Yes mum – and lots of other people as well.” “Then I want to say it for myself,” she insisted, and with great trouble and effort wrote rather a wonderful letter “To Hume It May Concern”. 

It was then we realised that our campaign wasn’t for the rights of carers of people with dementia; it was for the rights of the people with dementia themselves.

I hope this doesn’t seem a meaningless distinction because it’s not. People with a cognitive impairment, like dementia, need additional help as a right – from their family and carers if they have them. Restricting willing carers’ help to traditional visiting hours is about as silly as saying you can only use your hearing aids between 2pm and 4pm in the afternoon! For those people with dementia who are without available family or friends, additional help must be provided by any other means possible.

Carers are the “cognitive ramp” says Nurse Andy Tysoe. Dementia is, at the very least, a disability. Allowing carers’ access therefore isn’t simply just a matter of compassion and common sense, it’s also an issue of equality and human rights. 

Wednesday, 8 June 2016

Carers Week - Neonatal Admission to Discharge Pathway

By Judith Stephenson, Emma Farnsworth and Liz Cotterill.

When people think of carers they often think of carers for older people. However, in the neonatal unit a lot of parents become carers for very poorly babies.

Our ethos is family centred care and we’re committed to supporting the whole family to provide the best possible service. We know families want to be part of the process from admission to discharge so we ensure we include parents, families and carers and that they're at the centre of their baby’s care. That’s why we’re relaunching the admission to discharge pathway.

The admission to discharge pathway is a tick list that ensures that everything that needs to be done for the baby, family, parents and carers is done. However, it hasn’t always been used to its potential. Relaunching it will ensure that staff, parents and carers understand how we can work together. Parents and carers will feel supported and confident to care from admission to hospital until after discharge home.

It’s important to involve families in all aspects of the service, no matter how small.For example, following feedback from parents and carers we have changed our cot side folder. It used to be red. Parents felt red was an ‘angry’ colour so we changed it to green and added a large sticker on the front. 

We have a parent friendly power point presentation available. Posters are being made to go up in appropriate places across the Neonatal unit in all areas used by both staff and parents.

We’re relaunching the pathway on 14 and 21 June and want to make it a celebration. Staff are making and donating cakes to serve to families and staff in the parent coffee rooms on both QMC and City Hospital sites. Staff from the family care team will be easy to spot at the relaunch in green t-shirts with “Follow the Pathway” on the front and “Families and staff together” on the back.

Read more about how we are celebrating carers this week here.

Tuesday, 7 June 2016

Online feedback - weekly round up

By Andrew Steggles
Patient Experience Officer

Listening and learning from patient feedback is vitally important to us at NUH. 

With Patient Opinion and NHS Choices it’s quick and easy to share your experience. Alternatively, you can tell us how we did by sending us a tweet to @nottmhospitals

Last week we had a lot of positive feedback from patients and visitors.  Here are some examples:

I had an operation to repair a hiatus hernia. The doctors and nurses were brilliant and deserve the praise most people don’t give to them.

All the NHS staff on the Haematology unit were brilliant. You don't go here for the fun of it, but they make your life as pleasant as possible, both mentally and physically. Although I was glad to see the back of the place, I do think fondly of the many kindnesses shown by numerous members of staff. But, as nice as you are, hopefully I won't be seeing you again anytime soon!

Having sliced off the end of my index finger, my wife rushed me to A&E at QMC. I cannot praise enough the level of professionalism shown to me by all the nurses and staff that attended to my wound. What a marvellous bunch they are - thank you so much!

My grandad has just spent two weeks as an inpatient on both renal wards mostly Carrell ward. Sadly he didn't make it and passed away. I just want to give my thanks to amazing amazing staff on the wards for all the care they gave him.

I was in surgery on the 1st of June and the operation was a success. The surgeon was brilliant and did everything he could to get rid of my pain. I was on the ward D8 for my recovery and received the best possible care. All the staff worked hard and together and did everything they could to give you the best outcome.

Our annual staff awards, the NUHonours awards, are now open for nominations.  If you have received good care as a patient and want to say thank you you could nominate the member of staff or the team involved in your care. You can do this via our website:

Carers Week - Carer's Passport

By Liz Charalambous, Staff Nurse and PhD student.

At NUH we have long recognised the importance of a family centred approach to care for people with dementia. We believe that involving families and loved ones will help to decrease the risk of developing delirium, anxiety and depression. 

As part of our committment to theis approach we have developed the carer’s passport to support and involve carers when the person they care for is in hospital. Carers are given the passport upon admission to ensure they are welcomed onto the ward at any time of day or night to visit their loved one and be involved in that person’s care.

The passport doesn’t mean that carers must visit all the time but they are able to plan their time more creatively to suit their own particular needs. Carers can choose to visit at times which are meaningful to them, such as bedtime, or while having meals. The goal is not for the carer to do the essential care but to be involved, welcomed and recognised as a valuable and vital part of the patient’s life.

With this scheme carers and staff can develop a relationship and learn from each other to optimise care. Communication is streamlined and stress is reduced. Patients can see the familiar face of a loved one in hospital, leading to a better hospital experience.

The passport, initially funded by Nottingham Hospitals Charity, has been successfully trialled on our Health Care of Older People wards for carers of patients with dementia and we received positive feedback from patients, carers and staff. Now, we’re rolling it out to carers on all wards for all carers. We’re optimistic that it will be a positive step towards making our Trust a carer friendly community and we look forward to continuing to welcome carers at NUH.

This is just one of the ways in which we support and involve carers at NUH. You can find out more on our website

Monday, 6 June 2016

Carers Week - supporting carers

By Sara Deakin, Practice Development Matron for Older People and Dementia.

Carers week begins today. At NUH we recognise the vitally important role carers play. We support carers every day to ensure we are 'carer friendly'. 
Before I highlight some of the ways we do this I’d like to share a personal experience of caring.
Recently my dad had a fall at home. He spent two weeks in an acute hospital followed by two weeks in a rehabilitation bed before he was finally discharged home.
As a nurse I had inside knowledge of the system. As a daughter of a very poorly older man I was just as anxious and vulnerable as so many other carers. I acted as translator of medical terminology to my siblings but more importantly I was an advocate and a voice for my dad when he was at his most vulnerable. I just wanted the best for my dad but at times I felt like the nuisance relative, interfering, asking too many questions and in the way. 
This experience showed me how difficult it can be for carers and family. As health care professionals we should never underestimate the impact we have on the experience of carers. We need to welcome carers, treat them with respect, give them information and involve them in decisions. We all want the best for the patients in our care and by working with carers we are much better placed to achieve this.
Here at NUH we have a section in the ‘About Me’ booklet for carers to complete. The booklet was developed to help staff get to know the patient and the carer better. We use this as a means to involve carers and make them feel valued and supported. This gives carers an opportunity to identify if and how they would like to support their relative or friend when they are in hospital. 
We have a dedicated webpage for carers to outline some of the ways in which we support carers and make NUH a carer friendly community, such as our carer’s passport. If you’re a carer then please have a read to make sure you are aware of all the support you’re entitled to.
Throughout carers week we will be recognising and celebrating carers. each day this blog will highlight the various ways in which we support carers. read more about how we are celebrating carers this week here.
Make sure you follow us on twitter and facebook and let us know how you are getting involved using the hashtag #carersweek. 

Wednesday, 1 June 2016

Online Feedback - weekly roundup

By Sarah Kennedy
Patient Experience Officer

Posting online feedback about your experience of our hospitals has never been easier. You can post your comments online via Patient Opinion and NHS Choices (where you can read all of the feedback from patients about NUH). You can also tweet @nottmhospitals.

Here is a summary of last week’s feedback:

The paramedics and the cardiac team on Morris ward at Nottingham City Hospital Campus have been incredible. Their expertise efficiency and care have been exceptional. I could not have received better care. Sincere thanks

I was very impressed with the speed, efficiency, professionalism and respect I was treated with by staff in the TIA unit and Ultrasound Scan Dept. (and the cup of tea!). It is heartening and reassuring to know that the "professionals" really do care.

I fell on the way to work on Friday and gashed my head. I am thankful to so many people, the ambulance crew, nurses/student nurse, doctor and all at accident and emergency who treated me in a kind, friendly, caring and respectful manner. They were very thorough in the checks that they did and although they were busy and there were waiting periods, they all had time to explain and listen and I felt in good hands.
There were plenty of 'Hello my name is .....' Which is excellent really makes you feel like someone cares to know their name. The nurse admitting me was constantly yawning throughout which put me off! I was thinking don't you want to be looking after me? - It all felt like a paper exercise not that they were finding things out for their admission.

The distance from the tram lift at QMC to the main entrance would benefit from some means of transport. My husband's struggle to reach his appointment exaggerated his already painful condition, and may I also add there are no available wheelchairs either to enable me to push him. I think this should be addressed as urgent as you have a duty to disabled people visiting your hospital.

I just want to say a massive thank you for the care and support you gave my daughter after her car accident on Wednesday evening. We had a 3hr journey to get to the hospital - once we arrived we could see that our daughter has been well looked after and the Dr/nurses kept us up to date with her progress. Once she was taken to LJU ward the staff tried very hard to arrange accommodation for us but without luck. They kindly made us up beds in our daughter's room.

I have been a patient at the Ropewalk Audiology since I was 3. I just want to say a massive thank you for all your help over the years. I had a hearing check-up 2 months ago and the service I received was fantastic. The waiting times are almost non-existent. Your receptionists are helpful. I also visited yourselves the other day and was once again blown away by the fantastic care and service I received. I just want to let you know that whatever you're doing, keep it up! It is being appreciated and taken to heart!

My wife who has dementia was admitted to A & E recently after a fall at home and whilst both the staff and treatment were very good and she was also looked after very good. The layout and the ambience of the dept. was very bad for a person with dementia and was quite distressing for her and she had to be moved to a quieter area with more subdued lighting. It would be much better if a small area could be set aside for this purpose