I had the misfortune to be in hospital from 22nd to 29th December with a severe respiratory chest infection. Yes, to some extent it was my fault as I let it go too far before I called the GP out. I have to say that almost all the staff in the hospital who dealt with me, including the ambulance crew, A&E staff, medical assessment unit and finally the ward, from people who brought a cup of tea or cleaned, to the nurses, doctors and consultants were exemplary in their kindness and care.
But once I was in the ward, sharing with 5 other ladies all with different kinds of issues or infections, I became quite alarmed at how vulnerable I felt. As I was in bed 6, I was always last when they were checking BP, temperature and sats. So these instruments had gone around all the other patients and then risked bringing their infections to me as I saw no cleansing of instruments, or indeed nurses hands, between patients. The nearest WC I could use was unisex. It was always filthy, on the floor and on the seat. Not the hospital's fault but other patients. At least two visitors came into the ward to see other patients near me, bring with them full on colds and blowing their noses and sneezing.
As I was in hospital because my CLL means I have low defences, and was having difficulty with the respiratory infection (I had about 5 different antibiotics before anything started to make an improvement), I was getting quite alarmed that I was vulnerable to picking up something more from the sources I have mentioned.
I voiced (well, actually I had no voice for 10 days) my concern to the ward sister, and I have to say her response was immediate, and I was not made to feel uncomfortable about having complained. I was moved to a separate cubicle which they had thoroughly cleaned/sanitised before I moved into it.
Given they will isolate people with infections to protect other patients, I felt they did nothing at the other end of the scale to risk assess or protect patients with CLL/ compromised immune systems.
I would be interested to hear other people's experiences and thoughts on this issue.