Family’s anger over hospital care

Dorothy Middleton from Pontefract, pictured with her daughter Dorothy Snowden, is unhappy with the care she received at Pinderfields Hospital in Wakefield.
Dorothy Middleton from Pontefract, pictured with her daughter Dorothy Snowden, is unhappy with the care she received at Pinderfields Hospital in Wakefield.

THE family of a disabled grandmother who wasn’t showered for two weeks while admitted to hospital have branded her care as “absolutely atrocious”.

Pontefract woman Dorothy Middleton, 77, contracted MRSA while she was an inpatient at Pinderfields Hospital and her family claim she was treated rudely by nursing staff.

Her daughter, Dorothy Snowden, 54, said: “It was absolutely atrocious how she’s been treated. There is no patient care in that hospital.”

Mrs Middleton, of Love Lane Terrace, is partially paralysed following a stroke 20 years ago and also has diabetes. She was admitted to Pinderfields on June 12 suffering with pain in her shoulder.

Her daughter said during Mrs Middleton’s stay she was not once offered a shower or hair wash, nurses banged her knee against the bed safety rail when they moved her in her bed, then when Mrs Middleton complained of pain in her knee, claimed it was due to arthritis.

Mrs Snowden also alleges she was asked to bring her mother’s insulin from her home because staff were unable to get any in the hospital – and that she had not received the drug for three days – and while her stomach was scanned and her knee and hip X-rayed, the pain in her shoulder was not investigated.

She said: “On one occasion my mum asked for a bed pan and when she rang the buzzer, the nurse came in and said ‘what do you want’, and when Mum said she wanted a bed pan, the nurse said, ‘what, again?’. I’m absolutely gobsmacked they can treat patients like this.

“When she was discharged we were told she had MRSA, but she didn’t have it when she was admitted, and the staff said she’d got it there. The discharge sheet also said she had no pressure sores, but she does, on her back and in her groin, which is infected.”

Mrs Middleton said: “Some of them didn’t even sit me up to have my meal and you can’t lie down to eat.”

Mrs Snowden said she had spoken to the ward sister after her mother was discharged, who admitted Mrs Middleton had not been offered a shower and had apologised by phone for the level of patient care. She is due to have a meeting with a matron, and is considering making a formal complaint.

She added: “We have to do something because there’s going to be another patient in that bed, and another, and until someone does something about it, nothing will change in that hospital.

“My mum hasn’t been at all well since coming out of hospital, but she doesn’t want to go back there.”

Tracey McErlain-Burns, chief nurse and director of quality at Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “All complaints and expressions of concern are taken seriously and arrangements are in place for matron to meet with the family to answer questions and provide explanation. Following that meeting I am confident that matron will take the necessary steps to ensure that any lessons are learnt.”