Mar 30 2011 by Gordon Robertson, Airdrie & Coatbridge
A “DISGUSTED” family had to fetch a duvet from home for an elderly relative in Monklands Hospital – because staff didn’t have enough clean bedding.
Frail John McGraw (74) from Mill Brae Court in Kirkwood, Coatbridge, was taken into hospital to receive treatment for a diabetes-related infection in his foot.
But when loved ones paid him a visit they were shocked at what they found.
Family friend Lorna Paterson (42) said: “My mum told me he was in hospital so me and my sister went up to see if he needed anything.
“It was particularly cold outside and he was in a room on his own in ward eight.
“The windows were open and he was lying on top of his bed and all he had on top of him was his house coat and he had bare feet.
“He had one cotton sheet on the bed that was all and just his house coat covering him.
“He was holding it up to his chest and he was shaking.
“I asked him what was going on and why he didn’t have a blanket and he said they didn’t have any.
“We thought he was having a laugh but my sister spoke to a nurse who said she was really sorry and embarrassed but they didn’t have any bed linen.
“I had to rub his legs to keep him warm and cover his feet with my body warmer.”
Lorna phoned her sister-in-law and arranged for a duvet and extra pillows to be brought to the ward.
They couldn’t believe they had to do such a thing in this day and age.
She said: “I was totally shocked. I don’t blame the staff. What can they do if they don’t have the equipment?
“But someone of his age is taken into hospital for care and the most basic thing is to keep your patients comfortable and warm and they couldn’t do that.
“We made him comfortable and came out but we were raging about it.
“This should not have been allowed to happen.
“As I said, I don’t blame the nursing staff; it’s the people above them who have to take responsibility, including the Scottish Government who can find money for other things but not what really matters.”
The health board offered an apology to Mr McGraw when we contacted them last week.
A spokesperson for NHS Lanarkshire said: “We aim to provide the highest standard of care and regret any instance where someone feels we have failed to maintain this standard. If Mr McGraw or his family would like to contact us we will be happy to discuss their concerns with them. We are very sorry for any inconvenience and distress this has caused and we will investigate the circumstances surrounding this case.
“There are occasions where wards may experience a shortage of linen. In these circumstances contingency arrangements are put in place where linen is sourced from emergency stock or if necessary the laundry is called upon to replenish. We will look into this matter to ensure these procedures were followed.”