Britannia Hotels is the worst chain in UK, satisfaction survey finds #horse

#brittania hotels

#

Britannia Hotels is the worst chain in UK , satisfaction survey finds

John Cleese as Basil Fawlty, whose hotel is a byword for poor service BBC

With “rundown” hotels that are “well past their best-by-dates”, Britannia Hotels’ accommodation is said to be more Fawlty Towers than first class.

Now, the hotel group, used by the Home Office to house asylum seekers, has been rated the worst hotel chain in the UK for the second year in a row by the consumers’ association magazine Which?

Ranked last out of 29 chains, Britannia Hotels was awarded just one star – the lowest possible rating – for categories including bedrooms, cleanliness and whether the description of the hotel matched reality.

The Which UK hotel satisfaction survey, based on 5,888 member-experiences, ranked each chain according to an overall customer score based on categories such as customer service, food and value for money. Britannia Hotels, which fared poorly in all categories, achieved 33 per cent for its overall score – 3 per cent lower than in 2013, when it was also bottom of the poll.

The Britannia group, owned by businessman Alex Langsam, has previously acknowledged its problems and plans to “improve the standard” of its hotels, which include the Adelphi Hotel in Liverpool, Bosworth Hall Hotel in Warwickshire, The Grand in Scarborough, the Royal Albion Hotel in Brighton and the Russ Hill Hotel in Surrey.

The Roundhouse Hotel and Heathlands Hotel in Bournemouth and The Grand Burstin Hotel in Kent have been used by the Home Office to temporarily house more than 280 asylum seekers this year due to “overcrowding” at London’s detention centres. The group was unavailable for comment yesterday.

Premier Inn and Travelodge are the most used chains according to the survey, together accounting for more than half of all hotel stays. Premier Inn, visited by 668 members, gained four stars across the board, and an 81 per cent customer satisfaction score. The UK’s largest hotel brand came second only to Sofitel, which was awarded five stars in nearly every category and an 83 per cent customer rating.

Travelodge achieved a 60 per cent overall customer score, improving by 10 per cent since last year. The chain was placed in the bottom three in both 2012 and 2013, but has since invested £57m.

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China closes gap with US in hi-tech breakthroughs, KPMG finds #tech,innovation,future #tech,china


#

China closes gap with US in hi-tech breakthroughs, KPMG finds

China is now closing the gap with the United States in leading the development of disruptive technology breakthroughs, according to a new survey by KPMG.

The consultancy s latest annual global technology innovation survey, which polled 841 hi-tech industry executives around the world, also identified Shanghai as the city that will rival San Francisco, along with the rest of California s Silicon Valley, as the world s leading technology innovation hub over the next four years.

The survey provides further evidence that the innovation economy in China is being energised by the technology disruptions that are occurring, Tim Zanni, the global and US head of KPMG s technology, media and telecommunications practice, said in an interview with the South China Morning Post. What we ve seen emerge over time is the result of countries and cities striving to replicate and build on Silicon Valley s technology innovation blueprint, and their increasing degree of success.

KPMG s November poll showed a slight uptick for China 25 per cent, compared with 23 per cent in 2016 in the respondents perception of which country showed the most promise for disruptive technology breakthroughs with a global impact.

China s 13th Five-Year Plan has identified innovation as one of the five new tenets of the country s economic and social development.

A recent KPMG survey of China s chief executives identified new product development, big data analysis capabilities, the Internet of Things, machine-to-machine communications and other internet-based technologies as the country s top focus areas for further investment in the next three years.

While it continues to lead in the survey results, the US s ranking has declined to 26 per cent from 29 per cent in the previous year.

Respondents also see India and Britain progressing to become leading global markets for disruptive technologies after China, with forecasts of 11 per cent and 10 per cent, respectively, according to KPMG.

Shanghai, meanwhile, leads New York, Tokyo, Beijing and London in the five highest-ranked cities that survey respondents expect to be the next leading hi-tech innovation hub.

One can debate whether or not replicating Silicon Valley is possible, but the benefits of the effort are undeniable, Zanni said.

In April last year, the State Council of the Chinese government approved a plan for Shanghai to promote comprehensive pilot programmes for innovation reform.

Shanghai, with a population of more than 24 million, is also home to about seven state-level development zones, like the Waigaoquiao Free Trade Zone, and 21 municipal-level development zones.

The city is ranked first overall in the survey as a future technology leader with its strong regional leadership in financial markets and numerous hi-tech parks in Pudong, said Egidio Zarrella, the head of clients and innovation at KPMG China. Many venture capital and private equity firms head first to Shanghai because of the city s very strong fintech start-up community.

Zarrella said he expects Shenzhen to be ranked higher in future surveys as its top brands, such as Huawei Technologies and Tencent Holdings, raised global perception of the city.


Britannia Hotels is the worst chain in UK, satisfaction survey finds #lowest

#brittania hotels

#

Britannia Hotels is the worst chain in UK , satisfaction survey finds

John Cleese as Basil Fawlty, whose hotel is a byword for poor service BBC

With “rundown” hotels that are “well past their best-by-dates”, Britannia Hotels’ accommodation is said to be more Fawlty Towers than first class.

Now, the hotel group, used by the Home Office to house asylum seekers, has been rated the worst hotel chain in the UK for the second year in a row by the consumers’ association magazine Which?

Ranked last out of 29 chains, Britannia Hotels was awarded just one star – the lowest possible rating – for categories including bedrooms, cleanliness and whether the description of the hotel matched reality.

The Which UK hotel satisfaction survey, based on 5,888 member-experiences, ranked each chain according to an overall customer score based on categories such as customer service, food and value for money. Britannia Hotels, which fared poorly in all categories, achieved 33 per cent for its overall score – 3 per cent lower than in 2013, when it was also bottom of the poll.

The Britannia group, owned by businessman Alex Langsam, has previously acknowledged its problems and plans to “improve the standard” of its hotels, which include the Adelphi Hotel in Liverpool, Bosworth Hall Hotel in Warwickshire, The Grand in Scarborough, the Royal Albion Hotel in Brighton and the Russ Hill Hotel in Surrey.

The Roundhouse Hotel and Heathlands Hotel in Bournemouth and The Grand Burstin Hotel in Kent have been used by the Home Office to temporarily house more than 280 asylum seekers this year due to “overcrowding” at London’s detention centres. The group was unavailable for comment yesterday.

Premier Inn and Travelodge are the most used chains according to the survey, together accounting for more than half of all hotel stays. Premier Inn, visited by 668 members, gained four stars across the board, and an 81 per cent customer satisfaction score. The UK’s largest hotel brand came second only to Sofitel, which was awarded five stars in nearly every category and an 83 per cent customer rating.

Travelodge achieved a 60 per cent overall customer score, improving by 10 per cent since last year. The chain was placed in the bottom three in both 2012 and 2013, but has since invested £57m.

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Britannia Hotels is the worst chain in UK, satisfaction survey finds #hospice

#brittania hotels

#

Britannia Hotels is the worst chain in UK , satisfaction survey finds

John Cleese as Basil Fawlty, whose hotel is a byword for poor service BBC

With “rundown” hotels that are “well past their best-by-dates”, Britannia Hotels’ accommodation is said to be more Fawlty Towers than first class.

Now, the hotel group, used by the Home Office to house asylum seekers, has been rated the worst hotel chain in the UK for the second year in a row by the consumers’ association magazine Which?

Ranked last out of 29 chains, Britannia Hotels was awarded just one star – the lowest possible rating – for categories including bedrooms, cleanliness and whether the description of the hotel matched reality.

The Which UK hotel satisfaction survey, based on 5,888 member-experiences, ranked each chain according to an overall customer score based on categories such as customer service, food and value for money. Britannia Hotels, which fared poorly in all categories, achieved 33 per cent for its overall score – 3 per cent lower than in 2013, when it was also bottom of the poll.

The Britannia group, owned by businessman Alex Langsam, has previously acknowledged its problems and plans to “improve the standard” of its hotels, which include the Adelphi Hotel in Liverpool, Bosworth Hall Hotel in Warwickshire, The Grand in Scarborough, the Royal Albion Hotel in Brighton and the Russ Hill Hotel in Surrey.

The Roundhouse Hotel and Heathlands Hotel in Bournemouth and The Grand Burstin Hotel in Kent have been used by the Home Office to temporarily house more than 280 asylum seekers this year due to “overcrowding” at London’s detention centres. The group was unavailable for comment yesterday.

Premier Inn and Travelodge are the most used chains according to the survey, together accounting for more than half of all hotel stays. Premier Inn, visited by 668 members, gained four stars across the board, and an 81 per cent customer satisfaction score. The UK’s largest hotel brand came second only to Sofitel, which was awarded five stars in nearly every category and an 83 per cent customer rating.

Travelodge achieved a 60 per cent overall customer score, improving by 10 per cent since last year. The chain was placed in the bottom three in both 2012 and 2013, but has since invested £57m.

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Death and denial on the cancer ward: Refusing to accept reality can

#care of terminally ill patient

#

Death and denial on the cancer ward: Refusing to accept reality can be shattering to family, study finds

Tom Blackwell
Friday, Sept. 14, 2012

Naomi Kogan, a social worker at Montreal’s Jewish General Hospital, speaks with a patient undergoing chemotherapy at the hospital. Terminally ill patients who refuse to acknowledge their prognosis can cause their loved ones anxiety, depression and even rage, Kogan and two co-authors found in a newly published study. Christinne Muschi for National Post

The single parent had been in hospital for months, suffering from terminal cancer but refusing to accept that death was near.

Even the person’s two young children were unaware of the dire prognosis, recalls Naomi Kogan, a social worker at Montreal’s Jewish General Hospital who cared for the patient. Finally, last month, a teenage daughter arrived at the hospital to learn that her only parent would not be coming home — minutes before the person died.

“The impact has been devastating, to have only an hour to say goodbye,” said the social worker. “The child is having major difficulties.”

Related

Yet such entrenched denial of terminal disease is a surprisingly common occurrence on the cancer ward, said Ms. Kogan, and a new study she and colleagues have just published suggests it can have a shattering impact on the family members who care for those patients.

Relatives struggling to play along with the alternate reality sometimes have to turn a blind eye as the patient pretends to ignore dangerous symptoms, and are unable to share their own emotional turmoil over the illness, the researchers found. Sometimes, children are left completely in the dark.

Ms. Kogan suggests that health-care workers dealing with those people face similar angst.

It’s been such a difficult element in my work for all these years, so challenging and causing so much frustration

“These [patients in denial] are people who until the end are carrying this protective mechanism like a tortoise shell,” she said in an interview. “It’s been such a difficult element in my work for all these years, so challenging and causing so much frustration.”

The patients at the heart of her study, co-authored by Robin Cohen, a McGill University oncology professor, and Michelle Dumas, an Ottawa General Hospital nurse, acknowledge that they have cancer, but tend to minimize the seriousness of the condition that appears destined to kill them.

Despite what would seem like unequivocal evidence to the contrary, one woman in the study remained convinced she would recover, and married her common-law partner — inside the palliative-care ward.

Christinne Muschi for National Post Entrenched denial of terminal disease is a surprisingly common occurrence on the cancer ward, says social worker Naomi Kogan, seen talking with a chemotherapy patient at Montreal s Jewish General Hospital.

When Ms. Kogan started her career 24 years ago, the psychiatry department would be summoned in an effort to help such patients face reality, but health-care workers no longer try to disavow them of their beliefs, now considered a coping mechanism that is useful to the patient, at least.

A Montreal woman, who asked not to be named, said she and her family have been dealing with such a situation for several weeks. A close relative has stage-four cancer and likely has less than a year to live, yet until recently has cheerfully avoided the grim truth of her prognosis. She even talked from her hospital bed about running a half-marathon next year.

She would act as though everything was just fine. It was impossible to even acknowledge she was sick. It was very frustrating and isolating

“She would act as though everything was just fine,” said the relative. “It was impossible to even acknowledge she was sick. It was very frustrating and isolating.”

For the study published in the journal Palliative and Supportive Care. Ms. Kogan’s team identified dying patients at the Segal Cancer Centre who were in denial, and arranged interviews with family caregivers of 16 of them.

All said they felt it necessary to maintain their loved ones’ sense of denial, but that keeping up the pretence of normalcy took a toll in terms of anxiety, depression and even “feeling enraged.” Some said they were forbidden to dig up more information about the disease or ask probing questions of medical staff, or felt they could not make arrangements for funerals or future finances.

More than half the patients went so far as to not get the care they needed, masking symptoms that might have prevented them from receiving more of the chemotherapy they considered life-saving, or that would drive home the dire state of their health, the study said.

One patient refused to disclose such problems as severe diarrhea that should have prevented him from getting chemotherapy, went ahead with the treatment and almost died, prematurely, as a result. Another actually hid weights in his clothes so he would reach the minimum requirement to continue chemo, as patients who are too emaciated are not eligible, said Ms. Kogan.

He’s been crying for the past three days. He’s got pain in the neck, pain in the back, and he doesn’t want me to talk about it

Others would not acknowledge escalating pain, or refused to step up their medication levels in response. “He’s been crying for the past three days. He’s got pain in the neck, pain in the back, and he doesn’t want me to talk about it,” one caregiver told the researchers.

Ms. Kogan said there is not a lot that health-care and social workers can do in the face of such denial, though sometimes they can counsel the family members about their own anguish over the situation, and try to help make practical arrangements.

She said she was able to convince the single-parent patient, after much prodding, to prepare a will, without actually saying the person was dying. The will was a crucial tool for the family as the children started a new life with relatives.

Elizabeth Beddard-Huber, an advance-practice nurse specializing in pain management at the B.C. Cancer Agency, said she also encounters patients in denial, an experience that can be stressful and “hard to watch,” especially when young children are involved. In one case, two teenagers were so troubled by their inability to talk frankly to their fatally ill mother, they began acting out at school, she said.

Like the Montreal researchers, Ms. Beddard-Huber noted that such patients will hang on desperately to the hope of chemotherapy, decline pain medication and other palliative care, and occasionally look elsewhere when conventional medical treatment reaches a dead end.

“Sometimes it gets to a point where they have to spend quite a bit of money to seek extra treatment and go to Mexico or to China or to the States for special treatment,” said Ms. Beddard-Huber. “They’re looking for that miracle.”





Death and denial on the cancer ward: Refusing to accept reality can

#care of terminally ill patient

#

Death and denial on the cancer ward: Refusing to accept reality can be shattering to family, study finds

Tom Blackwell
Friday, Sept. 14, 2012

Naomi Kogan, a social worker at Montreal’s Jewish General Hospital, speaks with a patient undergoing chemotherapy at the hospital. Terminally ill patients who refuse to acknowledge their prognosis can cause their loved ones anxiety, depression and even rage, Kogan and two co-authors found in a newly published study. Christinne Muschi for National Post

The single parent had been in hospital for months, suffering from terminal cancer but refusing to accept that death was near.

Even the person’s two young children were unaware of the dire prognosis, recalls Naomi Kogan, a social worker at Montreal’s Jewish General Hospital who cared for the patient. Finally, last month, a teenage daughter arrived at the hospital to learn that her only parent would not be coming home — minutes before the person died.

“The impact has been devastating, to have only an hour to say goodbye,” said the social worker. “The child is having major difficulties.”

Related

Yet such entrenched denial of terminal disease is a surprisingly common occurrence on the cancer ward, said Ms. Kogan, and a new study she and colleagues have just published suggests it can have a shattering impact on the family members who care for those patients.

Relatives struggling to play along with the alternate reality sometimes have to turn a blind eye as the patient pretends to ignore dangerous symptoms, and are unable to share their own emotional turmoil over the illness, the researchers found. Sometimes, children are left completely in the dark.

Ms. Kogan suggests that health-care workers dealing with those people face similar angst.

It’s been such a difficult element in my work for all these years, so challenging and causing so much frustration

“These [patients in denial] are people who until the end are carrying this protective mechanism like a tortoise shell,” she said in an interview. “It’s been such a difficult element in my work for all these years, so challenging and causing so much frustration.”

The patients at the heart of her study, co-authored by Robin Cohen, a McGill University oncology professor, and Michelle Dumas, an Ottawa General Hospital nurse, acknowledge that they have cancer, but tend to minimize the seriousness of the condition that appears destined to kill them.

Despite what would seem like unequivocal evidence to the contrary, one woman in the study remained convinced she would recover, and married her common-law partner — inside the palliative-care ward.

Christinne Muschi for National Post Entrenched denial of terminal disease is a surprisingly common occurrence on the cancer ward, says social worker Naomi Kogan, seen talking with a chemotherapy patient at Montreal s Jewish General Hospital.

When Ms. Kogan started her career 24 years ago, the psychiatry department would be summoned in an effort to help such patients face reality, but health-care workers no longer try to disavow them of their beliefs, now considered a coping mechanism that is useful to the patient, at least.

A Montreal woman, who asked not to be named, said she and her family have been dealing with such a situation for several weeks. A close relative has stage-four cancer and likely has less than a year to live, yet until recently has cheerfully avoided the grim truth of her prognosis. She even talked from her hospital bed about running a half-marathon next year.

She would act as though everything was just fine. It was impossible to even acknowledge she was sick. It was very frustrating and isolating

“She would act as though everything was just fine,” said the relative. “It was impossible to even acknowledge she was sick. It was very frustrating and isolating.”

For the study published in the journal Palliative and Supportive Care. Ms. Kogan’s team identified dying patients at the Segal Cancer Centre who were in denial, and arranged interviews with family caregivers of 16 of them.

All said they felt it necessary to maintain their loved ones’ sense of denial, but that keeping up the pretence of normalcy took a toll in terms of anxiety, depression and even “feeling enraged.” Some said they were forbidden to dig up more information about the disease or ask probing questions of medical staff, or felt they could not make arrangements for funerals or future finances.

More than half the patients went so far as to not get the care they needed, masking symptoms that might have prevented them from receiving more of the chemotherapy they considered life-saving, or that would drive home the dire state of their health, the study said.

One patient refused to disclose such problems as severe diarrhea that should have prevented him from getting chemotherapy, went ahead with the treatment and almost died, prematurely, as a result. Another actually hid weights in his clothes so he would reach the minimum requirement to continue chemo, as patients who are too emaciated are not eligible, said Ms. Kogan.

He’s been crying for the past three days. He’s got pain in the neck, pain in the back, and he doesn’t want me to talk about it

Others would not acknowledge escalating pain, or refused to step up their medication levels in response. “He’s been crying for the past three days. He’s got pain in the neck, pain in the back, and he doesn’t want me to talk about it,” one caregiver told the researchers.

Ms. Kogan said there is not a lot that health-care and social workers can do in the face of such denial, though sometimes they can counsel the family members about their own anguish over the situation, and try to help make practical arrangements.

She said she was able to convince the single-parent patient, after much prodding, to prepare a will, without actually saying the person was dying. The will was a crucial tool for the family as the children started a new life with relatives.

Elizabeth Beddard-Huber, an advance-practice nurse specializing in pain management at the B.C. Cancer Agency, said she also encounters patients in denial, an experience that can be stressful and “hard to watch,” especially when young children are involved. In one case, two teenagers were so troubled by their inability to talk frankly to their fatally ill mother, they began acting out at school, she said.

Like the Montreal researchers, Ms. Beddard-Huber noted that such patients will hang on desperately to the hope of chemotherapy, decline pain medication and other palliative care, and occasionally look elsewhere when conventional medical treatment reaches a dead end.

“Sometimes it gets to a point where they have to spend quite a bit of money to seek extra treatment and go to Mexico or to China or to the States for special treatment,” said Ms. Beddard-Huber. “They’re looking for that miracle.”