An elderly woman told her family she wanted to die after she was left on a trolley at a Liverpool hospital for 33 hours in another illustration of the crisis gripping the NHS. Graeme Smith called an ambulance after his 92-year-old grandmother, a care home resident, became ill on New Year’s Eve. However, after enduring a long wait for it to arrive, they then had to join a queue of vehicles waiting to access the Aintree Hospital – and even then their problems were only beginning.
Mr Smith told the Liverpool Echo: “She arrived at the hospital at 9pm but didn’t get a place on a ward until 6am on January 2. The rest of the time she was waiting on a hospital corridor with about 40 other elderly or very sick people. She was very distressed after a while, she was crying and telling us she wanted to die.
“She was praying and asking to be taken. I’ve never heard her say anything like that before. The people in that corridor, some of them couldn’t have their basic needs met because there weren’t enough staff. Some couldn’t get to the toilet and had soiled themselves. it was horrendous.”
David Melia, Chief Nurse at Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Like many Emergency Departments across the country, we continue to face an unprecedented demand on our services.
“Our staff are working incredibly hard to provide safe care for patients in what are extremely challenging circumstances. This includes triaging patients on arrival, prioritizing care according to clinical needs, and regular reviews and safety checks to monitor and support patients while they are in the department.”
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