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A request from West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust (WHHT) and the Care Quality Commission (CQC) was made for some independent feedback prior to the Trust’s CQC inspection. It was agreed that Healthwatch Hertfordshire (HwH) would make 3 Enter and View visits (2 to Watford General Hospital and 1 to St Albans City Hospital).
What we found
We spoke to over 50 patients and relatives and visited 14 departments and wards. The majority of patients rated their experience as good or very good with many saying how hard the staff worked and how caring they were.
However there were inconsistencies around who actually had a Patient Carer and Visitor bedside guide with patients at St Albans City hospital appearing not to have any. Information on concessionary parking and carer benefits needed to be more widely advertised.
We made recommendations for improvement in both of the hospitals we visited.
What changed as a result of our visits
- The order and delivery of bedside guides to St Albans City Hospital.
- The Trust has produced and displayed posters that provide information for carers on concessionary parking but a further review of the location of the posters will be conducted to ensure the information is visible.
- New processes discussed to manage vulnerable patients waiting in the discharge lounge at Watford General Hospital.
- The purchase of digital radios for patients on Tudor ward at Watford General Hospital and activity trolleys on Bluebell and Winyard ward.
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