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Kate's story

Kate’s mum was admitted to the local hospital with fluid on her lungs. She received what Kate described as “fantastic care and attention” from the staff.

However, after a previous experience where her mum was kept in the hospital for 10 days longer than needed whilst a care package was arranged, Kate was already anxious about the plans for her mum’s discharge.

She tried to speak to a doctor about what support her mum would need after leaving hospital but despite repeated requests she was not able to speak to anyone.

Talking to Healthwatch Hillingdon about her mum’s discharge Kate said:

“Mum was given the Friday as a discharge date. I arranged with the hospital that she would be brought home in the hospital transport ambulance at 4pm as I had arranged for two carers to receive her at her house. This was necessary as Mum cannot walk, is very deaf, diabetic and needs support.

“For some reason the hospital transport ignored this instruction and took her home at 2pm. They took the key out of her key safe and let themselves in, dumping my Mum on the bed. They left her alone without a drink or any support.

“She rang my aunt who lives far away. My aunt tried to get hold of the carers to go around straight away but they couldn't, so she was left disorientated and alone for two hours.

“I'm really not happy about this as my mum is 80 years old and it is disorientating enough coming out of hospital, but to be dumped on a bed and just left is not how an elderly person with multiple health conditions should be treated.”

Kate was just one of 172 patients and family members Healthwatch Hillingdon spoke to, as well as staff from 20 local organisations, to inform their 2017 report.