Mum with suspected blood clot left rolling on A&E floor in agony

A mother who was doubled up in agony had to be treated on the floor of A&E in front of horrified patients due to NHS bed shortages.

Sophie Brown, who had a suspected blood clot, had waited ­five-and-a-half hours for a bed.

Fearing she would pass out and hit her head as she fell, Sophie, 32, rolled on to the floor with a blanket.

She said that when she arrived at Basildon University Hospital, Essex, her “heart rate was through the roof”.

She added: “I was told it would be another 35 minutes until I was sent to resuscitation. I was thinking ‘I might not have another 35 minutes’.

“I was brought in for an X-ray and told to sit in the clinical decision unit. I had been in a hard chair for hours and was beginning to feel really hot and dizzy.

“I pulled a blanket out of my bag and just fell to the floor with it.”

Nurses had to wheel out a blood ­pressure monitor and take a blood test in the waiting room.

Sophie, of Stanford-le-Hope, had gone to her GP with ­crippling chest pain and swollen legs 11 days after flying from Orlando, Florida.

After tests she was immediately referred to A&E.

Her husband James, 34, said: “We got there at 4.30pm but were kept waiting for ages. Enough was enough and Sophie just fell to the floor in agony.

“I kept saying ‘Is there nothing you can do? She’s lying on the floor?’ They kept saying no beds were available.

“There was a guy who must have been in his 80s who was also treated in front of everybody.

“We didn’t get home until midnight.”

A hospital spokesman said: “We are sorry Mrs Brown wasn’t happy with her care and ask her to call
our patient advice and liaison service. Doctors allocate beds based on clinical need.”

NHS bed numbers have dropped from around 299,000 to 142,000 over the past 30 years, while patient numbers grew.

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