NHS crisis: Heartlands Hospital apology after pensioner's 12-hour wait...for cream

By Pete Madeley | Streetly | Health | Published:

Hospital bosses have apologised to a pensioner who was forced to wait 12 hours for a tube of nasal cream after a routine medical procedure.

Pensioner Bill Keir and his wife Winnie waited 12 hours for medication

Bill Keir, aged 80, attended Heartlands Hospital at 8.30am to have nose plugs removed after he had suffered from recurring nosebleeds.

Doctors completed the procedure at 10.30am, but due to a series of blunders Mr Keir, from Streetly, Walsall, was made to hang around in a waiting room until after 10.30pm for his prescribed medication.

NHS bosses said the situation was 'far from ideal' and apologised after admitting that errors were made.

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Mr Keir branded the level of care 'a total shambles' and said: "We were left high and dry.

"I'm sure the medical staff were doing their best, but they were rushed off their feet and it is hard to know how they are able to cope with the pressure.

"It is little wonder that mistakes are made."


Mr Keir was admitted to hospital on November 4 suffering from a nosebleed and kept in for two nights.

He was scheduled for discharge on the morning of November 6 after doctors removed nose plugs.

He said he arrived for the routine procedure at 8.30am and had the plugs removed two hours later, at which point nursing staff told him he had to wait for his medication.

At around 3.30pm he was transferred from a ward to the discharge lounge.


Heartlands Hospital

"I waited and waited and waited," said Mr Keir, who was accompanied by his wife Winnie, 80.

"The discharge lounge was packed, and most people were waiting for three to four hours, but by 9pm we were the only people there."

Mr Keir was eventually given his medication and was able to leave the hospital shortly after 10.30pm.

He subsequently made a complaint to the Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust.

NHS bosses said Mr Keir's medication had erroneously been sent to the wrong ward, and that nurses had initially failed to administer his medication as it was out of stock.

In a letter to Mr Keir, interim chief nurse Julie Tunney wrote: "Please accept my sincere apologies for the two errors which were made in a short period of time and which delayed you longer than necessary.

"I appreciate your discharge home was far from ideal and we understand how distressing this was for you and your wife."

Pete Madeley

By Pete Madeley

Political Editor for the Express & Star. Responsible for local and national political stories, opinion, comment and analysis.


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