June 18, 2021

Waterford hospital comes last in new national patient survey

University Hospital Waterford (UHW) has come last in a new patient experience survey.

The National Inpatient Experience Survey, run in conjunction with the National Care Experience Programme, asked patients about their hospital experiences and, acting on their feedback, tries to improve the quality of care provided in Irish hospitals.

Of the 39 hospitals surveyed, UHW came last with a 7.7 out of 10 rating, far below the national average of 8.3.

South Tipperary General Hospital (7.7) received the same score, while University Hospital Limerick (7.8) and St Luke’s General Hospital, Kilkenny (7.9) received marginally better scores.

Royal Victoria Eye and Ear Hospital, Dublin (9.5), Croom Orthopaedic Hospital, Limerick (9.4) and South Infirmary Victoria University Hospital in Cork (9.4) topped the list.

Nationally, 26,897 people were invited to participate in the third National Inpatient Experience Survey. In total, 12,343 people responded. 445 patients from UHW took part and the average age of the respondent was 64.8.

The majority of patients said that they had positive overall experiences in UHW. Some 78% of patients said they had a ‘good‘ or ‘very good’ experience, which is nonetheless lower than the average national score of 84%.

UHW received below-average scores for ‘care on the ward,’ ‘discharge or transfer’ and ‘overall experience’, but scored close to the national average, if still below, for ‘admissions’ and ‘examination, diagnosis and treatment’.

The majority of patients said they were treated with respect and dignity, and had confidence and trust in hospital staff. However, the hospital still scored below the national average on these two questions. A number of patients also said they didn’t feel as involved in decisions about their care as much they wanted to be.

It was not all bad news for UWH, the majority of patients said that they were always offered a good choice of food.

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