Man dies after waiting hours to be treated in hospital

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The death of a British man waiting to be seen in a public hospital accident and emergency department has sparked an inquiry into the way he was treated.

The man, 37 year old Stewart Fleming from Rainham in Kent, was forced to wait 2 hours before anyone saw him even though he had been referred to the hospital by his GP who was so concerned about his condition that he requested immediate admission.

According to the Medway National Health Service Foundation Trust, Fleming had a suspected viral infection and appeared at the Medway Maritime Hospital on 15th December at 18:16 and was seen by a triage nurse two hours later at 20:20.

The unit had been it seems been experiencing long waits due to the high numbers of admissions; Mr Fleming’s family has expressed concern at the way in which his case was handled.

Fleming a father of two had a suspected viral infection which had failed to clear with antibiotics and his wife claims her husband’s condition deteriorated while he was waiting - it was apparently six hours before he was admitted.

A week later Fleming was transferred to the Harefield Hospital in west London where he died on Saturday.

Mrs Fleming has said her husband should have been treated sooner as a doctor had already explained the situation in writing and she has questioned why the hospital did not act on the GP’s note and treat her husband immediately.

While Mrs Fleming acknowledges that the intensive care unit did their very best once he was there and were pushing for him to be transferred Harefield, the long delay in the initial stages was unnecessary.

The Medway NHS Foundation Trust says such delays are not unique to Medway as hospitals across the country were all experiencing a rise in demand for their services at this time.

The Trust says it is currently investigating the case internally and has urge the Fleming family to contact them over their concerns.


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