Published: September 10, 2021
A B.C. woman is speaking out after she says her elderly dad spent three days in an ER waiting room before being given a bed.
Jolene Carlsen’s father Dave was taken by ambulance to Lionsgate Hospital on Monday around midnight.
There were no beds available so he was relegated to a stretcher in the waiting room.
But he wasn’t the only one, according to Carlsen, who said 14 patients were stacked up in the hallway as there was nowhere else to put them.
“It’s just really unacceptable to treat human beings like this,” Carlsen said.
“He wasn’t hooked up to a monitor so how did they know his blood pressure was OK, or his heart was OK?”
Dave Guild is immobile and needs constant care, but in the ER there was nowhere to properly care for him.
He waited three days before a bed became available on the fourth floor.
“After 24 hours of just laying there, my mom pleaded for somebody to please change him,” Carlsen said.
“They attempted to change him right there in the waiting room, which to me is just a complete lack of dignity.”
Neither Vancouver Coastal Health nor Lionsgate Hospital responded to requests from Global News for comment.
They did send a statement similar to what B.C.’s Health Minister Adrian Dix said Thursday.
“If you need emergency care, you should go to the emergency room. We’re going to continue to do the work to support our staff,” Dix said.
Overcrowding and staff shortages have plagued hospitals around B.C.
Beds and any staff on hand are often being used to treat an ever-increasing number of COVID patients,
In Kamloops, a 70-year-old woman died in similar circumstances, after waiting in the emergency room at Royal Inland Hospital for hours.
Carlsen’s dad is now receiving the level of care he didn’t get when he was first admitted to the emergency room Monday night.
His doctors said they are having a hard time treating him and he is suffering organ failure.
“I know it’s not the nurses’ fault, I know the paramedics are doing the best they can, I know everybody is as taxed as they can be, but it has to be changed,” Carlsen said.