AN INVESTIGATION has been launched after a 90-year-old woman was left waiting for five hours on a trolley in a hospital corridor.
Dementia sufferer Pam Bailey, of Alexander Grove, Fareham, was admitted to A&E at Queen Alexandra Hospital in Cosham, Portsmouth, suffering from a water infection, vomiting and dehydration.
An ambulance crew handed over Mrs Bailey to hospital staff at 6.20pm – when she was put on a trolley bed in a corridor. She was left waiting until just after 11pm to be seen in a treatment room.
Daughter Pauline Taylor, 64, of Weevil Lane, Gosport, was with her mum on January 29. She says doctors told her to complain, saying it happens often.
The pensioner had been periodically monitored by hospital staff and was put on a drip at 10pm before being seen. She was moved to a ward at 3am.
Mrs Bailey said: ‘I’m pretty shaken up – it felt like years off my life.
‘I think they owe us something but I don’t know what it is. Sorry would be a nice word for them to say to everybody.
‘For two-and-a-half years during the war I was in the Wrens and we never had treatment like that. I wouldn’t want anyone else to go through it.’
Mrs Taylor took photos of her mum in the queue and has complained about the wait – along with her mum’s subsequent treatment. She said that although she and her husband were with her, confused Mrs Bailey later thought she had been left at a roadside.
‘We were just so tired and thirsty, it was awful,’ said Mrs Taylor.
‘The ambulance driver did say to me there was a queue at QA but I didn’t know what she meant – I never thought of queuing on trolleys.
‘Because she’s got dementia and is elderly she didn’t know where she was or what was happening – when we visited her the next day she thought we’d left her.’
The hospital must see 95 per cent of patients within four hours but failed to do so between September and December, according to papers from last month’s Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust Board.
They show that in November, on average 14 people attended A&E each day at 6pm, the same time as Mrs Bailey, with three people waiting more than four hours.
The hospital said could not comment on its investigation due to confidentiality but it aims to treat patients in time according to their clinical needs.
‘We have recently experienced an unprecedented increase in attendances to the department,’ said a spokeswoman.