"Patient care and hospital conditions"

About: Royal Melbourne Hospital

(as a relative),

All staff at Royal Melbourne Hospital are patient, informed, helpful and caring. However, I feel they are grossly understaffed and unable to meet patient needs at the levels espoused by the hospital websites. 

While visiting my parent at the hospital, I saw 2 mice run across the foyer. You can imagine my horror, although it is no wonder - trays of half eaten food sit on trolleys for hours, full urine containers are left in rooms for at least half a day or more,  bins are full and the floors are filthy. This is bad enough for us, but what about the patients whose beds are on the floor due to fall risks?

I feel this is unacceptable for patients and staff alike, and more needs to be done by hospital administrators to rectify the situation and get this hospital back to the standards it once had. The research and learning facilities may be amazing, but I feel the patient care conditions are seriously lacking, and isn't this supposed to be the first priority of a public hospital?


Response from George Braitberg, Executive Director Strategy, Quality and Improvement, Melbourne Health

picture of George Braitberg

Dear warmbd87,

Thank you for providing feedback on the care your parent received at the Royal Melbourne Hospital. I hope all is well and they have now recovered. Thank you for your kind comments about our caring staff, research and learning facilities.

You made comments about our staff being overworked and the general cleanliness of the hospital. Regarding your concern about the staffing, let me reassure you that we employ to the appropriate nurse-patient ratios and do have the capacity to employ extra staff on a needs basis. Occasionally during periods of time such as flu season (despite achieving our best ever flu vaccination rate this year) we have unplanned leave that is difficult to fill, particularly in specialised areas. I am not sure if this may have contributed to your observation.

We are currently trialing new ways of delivering food and cleaning around bed spaces as we are committed to ensuring our public and ward areas appear as fresh and clean as possible. We have very old infrastructure and this makes it harder to achieve. There is an increased need to be vigilant because of the impact of major projects such as the Metro Rail works and we will continue to deal with issues as they arise.

I would like to apologise for your observations about our patient care conditions but can assure you we monitor patient perceptions about cleanliness regularly and have processes in place to improve. However, I will bring your comments to the attention of our Facilities Manager.

If you would like to correspond further regarding this matter please contact our consumer liaison department on consumerliaison@mh.org.au


Prof George Braitberg

  • {{helpful}} {{helpful == 1 ? "person thinks" : "people think"}} this response is helpful