SOME wards at Queen Alexandra Hospital have got so hot in the summer weather that staff have been asked to bring in fans.
As temperatures have soared over recent weeks, staff and patients at the Portsmouth hospital have been struggling to cope with the heat in some parts of the building.
And in one case, Dee Skelton, of Cadnam Road, Eastney, took to Facebook to appeal to buy second-hand fans for QA.
The 42-year-old visits her mother daily, who has been in ward G4 for almost a week.
She said: ‘It’s so stifling up there. They have no air conditioning and as a visitor it’s sweltering, so I don’t know how the patients and staff are coping.
‘I took three fans up to the hospital earlier in the week but I don’t believe it’s up to members of the public to supply them.
‘It should be the management who should be dealing with this.’
One nurse said they felt ‘sick and exhausted’ from working in the heat, which at one point had reached 28C.
Patient support group Healthwatch Hampshire manager Steve Taylor said: ‘Being unwell is bad enough, but if you’re subjected to high heat levels then it’s really bad.
‘Although it’s not a hotel, the hospital must keep patients as comfortable as possible.
‘I’m sure the hospital said it’s doing all it can, but it must make sure it does.’
The deputy director of nursing for Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust, which runs QA, said it has a plan.
Lorna Wilkinson said: ‘During the level-two heatwave warning from the Met Office, we requested our staff bring their office fans to the wards to assist in the comfort of our patients.
‘Our older, vulnerable patients can soon become uncomfortable in the hot weather. Our aim was to provide individual fans at the bedside in addition to our air conditioning and cooling systems.
‘Sick and elderly people are more at risk in the heat, as are the very young and those with chronic or long-term medical conditions.
‘The trust has an internal heatwave plan which all staff are following.
‘As part of that we are carrying out temperature checks and added extra cooling units for wards where higher temperatures have been recorded.’
To read The News’ view on this click here.