Complaints about New Cross Hospital were not addressed more than 18 months after being made, a patients’ group has said.
Inspection of toilets, calls for walkways for older people to avoid them going out into the cold, and information for patients after being discharged were among the issues of concern the Wolverhampton Local Involvement Network (LINk) raised.
The group’s chairman has said he was “disappointed” that “minor” changes requested as far back as July 2011 had not been addressed.
Patients had complained that month that they were not informed in enough time about plans for their discharge and did not know enough about transport and medication. In January this year, LINk organisers found that 80 per cent of patients were still being sent home at short notice.
Requests were also made as far back as June 2011 for a new route for eye patients being referred from the A&E department to the Acute Referral Unit to avoid elderly people having to go outside in bad weather. By November last year, LINk found that other options “appeared to have been rejected”.
Calls were also made in April 2012 for laminated signs in toilets so that cleaners could write on them to state the time that they had been in. The complaint was still outstanding last December as at least one ward did not have the notice in place.
John Mellor, chairman of the Wolverhampton LINk, said the hospital had given guarantees that shortcomings would be tackled. He said: “It is very disappointing to report that considerable shortcomings have been found in the hospital’s performance.”
The findings by LINk have also been sent to all the non-executive directors of the Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust Board, the trust’s lead governor, Wolverhampton Shadow Health and Wellbeing Board, Wolverhampton Health Scrutiny Panel, industry watchdogs the Care Quality Commission and Monitor.