Patients speaking out about intensive care support

Intensive care patients got together at a feedback event to share their experiences of treatment at Pilgrim Hospital, Boston.

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It was a chance for the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) team at the hospital to hear direct from patients who have spent time on the unit and their families, on what they thought of their care and any improvements they think can be made to the service.

In addition to presentations from staff on service delivery developments, there were also patient speakers, and a question and answer session with consultants and specialist care team members for patients to take part in.

The now annual event was organised by Junior Sister on ICU Natalie Dillamore, who is responsible for the follow up of patients.

“A selection of patients who have undergone intensive treatment and support are invited back to share their experiences with each other,” said Natalie.

“Each year is proving more and more successful and this time we had over 15 former patients attending along with their relatives.

“We got some great feedback and all of the comments help to improve on future patient care and how we can help patients and relatives deal with the difficult times they are going through whilst on the unit.”

Suzanah Pearl (39), from Spilsby, spent two weeks on Pilgrim’s intensive care unit last year after suffering two collapsed lungs.

She said speaking to other people who had undergone similar experiences is a great help.

“I woke up one morning and was struggling to catch my breath.  I was admitted to hospital and found I had pneumonia in one of my lungs,” said Suzanah.

“I was put on a ventilator but I kept deteriorating and within a few hours both my lungs had collapsed.

“I was in an induced coma, very confused and hallucinating – I couldn’t move or speak – it was very scary.

“The staff were excellent, they stay with you 24/7 and do everything for you – I couldn’t fault them.

“I gave a short speech to the other patients on the day about my experiences and what I went through and although it’s hard, it definitely helps to speak out.”