Patients want greater ward-level information about infection rates, nurse-to-patient ratios, access to 24-hour cleaning services and a better understanding of who is in charge.
Results from a recent Patients Association survey The Cost of Hospital Visits also show that patients are not being given a transport needs assessment, are unhappy with levels of patient confidentiality in waiting areas, and that there is poor signposting in hospitals.
The survey of hospital visitors, 1,000 Patients Association members and the Health Estates and Facilities Management Association found that a third of respondents did not see staff washing their hands or using alcohol hand gels. A fifth did not think the hospital toilets were sufficiently clean and the same number rated the overall cleanliness of their hospital as poor or unacceptable.
Almost three quarters of those surveyed also felt they were not offered sufficient confidentiality when talking to staff.
Patients Association director Katherine Murphy said: ‘These results should be a wake-up call to hospital managers, boards and the Department of Health.
‘The whole patient journey is essential to the care of that patient. Vulnerable patients expect to be supported at every stage of their hospital visit from the appointment letter arriving until they come home after treatment. Despite the huge financial investment, some patients still see little benefit.’