St Helens & Knowsley Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust - Whiston Hospital Ward VisitsDownload (PDF 4MB)
Summary of report content
Healthwatch Halton, Healthwatch Knowsley and Healthwatch St Helens each cover Whiston Hospital and carry out regular monthly outreach sessions at the Trust to gather the views of patients and visitors. To gain further insight on the experiences of patients at the hospital they approached the Trust with a request to visit and view the day to day running of wards and to gather the views of patients and visitors. On 14 May 2019, volunteers and staff from Healthwatch Halton, Healthwatch Knowsley and Healthwatch St Helens visited Whiston Hospital to visit a number of wards. During the visit they spoke with a total of 43 patients and visitors.
The Maternity wards and clinics of Whiston Hospital were bright, clean and welcoming areas. The patient and visitors talked to were happy overall with the care they were receiving. They gave positive comments about the Midwives but did mention how busy they are, especially during the night.
Ward 2D is a busy general ward. The ward was clean and clutter free with good signage to facilities. Patients and visitors were generally satisfied with the care received; however, several issues were raised at the time of the visit. Lack of communication between staff and patients was highlighted as well as the use of a treatment room as a bed, which has led to a possible formal complaint. Staff being very busy also meant patients can find it hard to get prompt access to water and extra pillows when needed.
Ward 1A provides treatment and care for older people with complex long-term health condition. It is a clean and tidy ward which had a calm and relaxing feel to it during the visit. Patients were positive in their feedback about the ward and appreciated the efforts of the staff. Patients felt the staff appeared to be over stretched at times.
Ward 3A (plastic surgery) was clean and welcoming. Healthwatch noted that staff carried out their work in a professional, relaxed and caring way during our visit. Patients felt that the care they received from staff was very good.
Ward 3D (gastroenterology) was tidy and clutter free. The ward appeared very busy but well organised during the visit. Healthwatch noted that staff were pleasant, smiling and helpful when dealing with patients. Patients commented positively on the staff but also highlighted that they appeared very busy, which led to patients waiting for attention. During the visit Healthwatch noted that call bells were not always answered promptly.
Discharge lounge - Healthwatch spoke with 2 patients on the Discharge Lounge. Both patients felt that they had been treated with dignity and respect by staff at the hospital.
There were some comments about the need to improve wheelchair accessibility.
- Supply information on Healthwatch for patients and visitors to ensure people know how to feedback and get local information and support with complaints if necessary.
- Offer information leaflets on services for all areas who use Whiston Hospital.
- Maternity - Review staffing levels during night shifts to ensure the care is equal to that given during the day.
- Ward 2D - Keep patients up to date with what is happening in their care and why. Ask patients if they have any questions.
- Ward 2D - Ensure the treatment room is used appropriately with drinks supplied.
- Ward 2D - Ensure drinks are always readily available to all patients.
- Ward 1A – Check toilets on the ward to see if the addition of further grab rails would benefit some patients.
- Ward 1A –It is important that communication between staff and relatives works consistently well. Requests for information by families should be responded to in a timely manner.
- Ward 3D – Ensure that call buttons are responded to in a timely manner
- Ensure clear signage is used on rooms that are out of bounds to patients / visitors.
- Consider carrying out a further audit to ensure all necessary areas are wheelchair accessible.