Enter and view: Queen's Hospital Romford, inpatient meals

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Summary of report content

Healthwatch Havering conducted an Enter and View visit at Queen's Hospital in October 2017 to observe the serving of lunchtime food to patients in four wards. The report found that the menus were available to choose from including those who have special dietary requirements and specialised cutlery was readily available for those who had difficulty using traditional cutlery. The Enter and View team observed the process of ordering, serving and tasting throughout the wards. It was reported that not all patients were aware they could choose meals from the range of menus when ordering. During the food distribution, patients received the correct orders and the food looked appetising and jugs of water were provided within reaching distance and remained covered. The mealtimes were not always adhered to by clinical staff, which made distribution of food, by the catering team, difficult. For those that required assistance with feeding, help was provided. Healthwatch Havering made a number of recommendations including: That consideration be given to the introduction of illustrated menu cards for the use of patients whose ability to read has been impaired (e.g. stroke patients or those living with dementia) so that they may make easier and better choices of food; that efforts continue to recruit more volunteers to assist at mealtimes; that consideration be given to using the volunteers to assist in checking fridges on wards for out of date food and ensuring that all patients have access to menu cards; that Check Charts should be in place for out of date food and clearly marked daily; that patients be encouraged to use hand cleaning wipes before they are served with food; and that, where possible and practicable, patients be encouraged to sit at table for meals. The response from the service provider was positive and outlined the action plans to address all the recommendations made in the report.

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General details

Report title 
Enter and view: Queen's Hospital Romford, inpatient meals
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch Havering
Date of publication 
Monday, 21 January, 2019
Date evidence capture began 
Thursday, 4 October, 2018
Date evidence capture finished 
Thursday, 4 October, 2018
Type of report 
Enter and view
Key themes 
Communication between staff and patients
Food and nutrition
Quality of catering
Quality of staffing
Staff attitudes
Healthwatch reference number 

Methodology and approach

Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation? 
Primary research method used 
How was the information collected? 
Visit to provider
If an Enter and View methodology was applied, was the visit announced or unannounced? 
Not Known

Details of health and care services included in the report

Secondary care services 
Inpatient care

Details of people who shared their views

Number of people who shared their views 
Age group 
All people 18 and over
Specific ethnicity if known 
Sexual orientation 
Does the information include public's views? 
Does the information include carer's, friend's or relative's views? 
Does the information include staff's views? 
Types of health and care professionals engaged 
Does the information include other people's views? 
What was the main sentiment of the people who shared their views? 

Outcomes and impact

Were recommendations made by local Healthwatch in the report? 
Does the information contain a response from a provider? 
Yes action has been taken or promised
Is there evidence of impact in the report? 
Is there evidence of impact external to the report? 
What type of impact was determined? 
Tangible Impact (cost related)
Tangible impact (not cost related)

Network Impact
Relationships that exist locally, regionally, nationally have benefited from the work undertaken in the report
Implied Impact
Where it is implied that change may occur in the future as a result of Healthwatch work. This can be implied in a provider  response, press release or other source. Implied impact can become tangible impact once change has occurred.
Tangible Impact
There is evidence of change that can be directly attributed to Healthwatch work undertaken in the report.