Norfolk

Norwich hospital: Spinal infection patient spent 12 hours on trolley

Karen Godfrey
Image caption Karen Godfrey, 50, was admitted to the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital

A hospital patient has described having to wait 12 hours on a trolley in the accident and emergency department.

Karen Godfrey, 50, of Guist, near Dereham, Norfolk, was admitted to the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital on 18 December with a suspected spinal cord infection.

She said she was left "scared" and "alone" on an ambulance trolley.

The hospital has apologised to Ms Godfrey and said it was "under extreme pressure" at the time.

Ms Godfrey suffered her first spinal chord infection in 2014 and spent months learning to walk again.

Image copyright PA/Jeremy Durkin
Image caption The hospital said on that particular day a new patient was arriving at our emergency department on average every four minutes

Now a degenerative spinal condition means she is in constant pain, relying on husband Paul, her crutches and a wheelchair.

She was admitted to the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital a week before Christmas and said she was still haunted by her long night on a trolley.

"I felt so alone. It was a really scary time and it has really affected me mentally. I kept crying when I got home."

She said she did not blame the medical staff "who do their best to care".

A hospital spokesman said: "That particular day a new patient was arriving at our emergency department (ED) on average every four minutes. There was particularly high demand on our ED resuscitation room and intensive care services on that night.

"We'd be happy to speak to Ms Godfrey further if she has any further questions or concerns."

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