Pensioner claims catalogue of errors at controversial hospital

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Linda Gatiens claims staff at the Victoria Hospital bandaged her leg with and incontinence pad

A PENSIONER claims she was made to sit in a dirty bed for three hours after being abandoned by staff at a controversial Scottish hospital.

Linda Gatiens, 64, was also given IV treatment in the hospital corridor and made to use her coat as a cover after the Victoria Hospital in Kirkcaldy, Fife, ran out of blankets for patients to use.

The £170 million pound hospital wing, which only opened in December last year, has been at the centre of a string of complaints.

Last month a 25-year old Scots mum was forced to give birth on the frozen pavement outside the hospital after nurses failed to answer a door buzzer for six minutes.

Last week the family of a one-legged heart surgery patient issued a formal complaint, after the OAP was abandoned in a toilet by staff at the same hospital.

Mrs Gatiens, from Dunfermline, was admitted to hospital last month with an infected wound on her leg and described her stay at Victoria Hospital as “the worst 10 days of my life”.

Disorganised

She alleges she had an incontinence pad wrapped around her infected right leg as there was no suitable dressing available.

And she faced a further three-hour wait to go to the toilet after hospital staff failed to find her a pair of crutches.

Mrs Gatiens has since issued a formal complaint to the troubled hospital, which raises questions over the hospitals health and hygiene policies.

Mrs Gatiens said: “I noticed that after the floors were dry-mopped there was a terrible smell in the room, like dirty laundry.

“Staff always seemed disorganised and rushed off their feet, and a few of them were less than professional.

She added: “Staff were always having to chase around for equipment.

Not to have any means of elevation for my leg was also unforgivable in a brand-new hospital. This could seriously have compromised my recovery had I not taken matters into my own hands and remedied this myself.

“I don’t blame the medical or nursing staff, they’re really chasing their tails, but it’s really bad they can’t do their jobs because they’re always looking for equipment.”

She added: “My sole reason for making my experience public is to alert the ‘decision-makers’ to the fact that there are serious problems with the day-to-day running of the departments I have highlighted at Victoria Hospital.

“I believe these are problems which will not go away until a proper investigation is carried out, plus an open and honest consultation with staff at grassroots level.”

An NHS Fife spokesman, said: “We can confirm that out Patient Relations Department have just received correspondence from Mrs Gatiens and we will be responding to her directly once we have fully investigated her concerns.

“The operation of wards is continuously assessed and reviewed and we will take action in areas where we fall short of the high standards we set ourselves.”

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