A woman has suffered a miscarriage in a chair at the Royal Hobart Hospital because there was no bed available.
Attending the hospital’s emergency department, the woman was unable to access one of the nine empty beds available.
Speaking with ABC News, Neroli Ellis from the Nursing and Midwifery Federation said, “It is absolutely a dangerous situation at the moment, and we are calling on the Government to provide more funding to reopen some of these closed beds.”
“We’ve got situations in ED [emergency department] where mental health clients can’t even see natural light and they’re there for two to three days,” she said. “That breaches human rights conventions.”
Also speaking with the ABC News, Dr Tim Greenaway, President of the Australian Medical Association, said the woman’s terrible experience reflected the dire state of Tasmania’s health system in general.
“The fact that this poor lady had to endure the indignity of what she went through in a chair when there were no beds available is a reflection on a system in crisis,” he said. “The problem is inadequate capacity, inadequate staffing, inadequate bed numbers,” Dr Greenaway said.
This is not the first time the hospital has publicly been rebuked for a seeming lack of care and services. In January, Health Minister Michael Ferguson was forced to apologise after a 95-year-old woman was forced to lie on the floor while waiting to be seen at the hospital.
“To date, in recent weeks, our response has simply not been good enough,” he said. “I’m putting people on notice that I’m willing to consider action that would disrupt the old ways of running hospital emergency departments,” he said.
Image source: Shutterstock