"Nurse left my mom lying on the floor"

About: Heartlands Hospital / General medicine

(as a relative),

In early August I came with my mom in an ambulance to A&E (I was worried she'd suffered another stroke having already had 2 in previous years). We arrived just before lunch but waited for about 1 hour to be seen by a nurse.

The nurse diagnosed my mother has having a serious inner ear infection and told her she'd spoke to a ENT doctor and they had decided to send her home with antibiotics and to come back the next day to the ENT department for treatment. It was clear to see that this decision caused my mom severe distress and I explained to the nurse that I did not agree that my mom was well enough to be sent home.

I was then told that the nurse did not deem my mom ill enough to warrant taking a hospital bed and that if my mom was not well enough to go home alone then I should take her home with me (I do not have a spare bed and I explained that this was not an option).

The nurse then called on a junior doctor to come and see my mom, after speaking to my mom they decided that they wanted to get her out of bed and see her walk, they sat my mom up in the bed and even though she kept falling forward they insisted that she walked and lowered her onto the floor, after my mom had taken just two steps she fell backwards onto the floor (luckily I was standing behind her and was able to lower her head slowly to the floor so she did not bang her head).

The nurse and doctor continued to tell my mom, who was now lying on the floor, that she was aware of what she was doing and that she must get up as they were not going to help her. This upset me a lot and after 10 minutes I left the room, I returned after 5 minutes to find her still on the floor, I told the nurse this was unacceptable and she left the room to fetch someone to help lift my mom, I followed her and again explained that my mom was very unwell and the decision to send her home was wrong, again she told me that they were not there to treat 'behaviour problems' that they'd decided my mom was displaying (I spoke to my mom 2 days after this and she has no memory of this at all, had she fainted? ).

The 2 male staff members lifted my mom back onto the bed and another doctor was called, she was very helpful and listened to my concerns and my mom was admitted to the hospital and sent for a CT scan which found my mother to be suffering from a severe mastoid infection, it is now a number of days later and my mom is still in hospital and on penicillin injections to try and clear the infection.

I know my mom has been to A&E on a previous occasion suffering from severe anxiety problems but I feel very disappointed that the nurse wrongly decided that this was the major problem this time

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Response from Iona Belgrove, Patient Services Manager, Heart Of England NHS Foundation Trust

Dear Deb640

I am sorry to hear of your mother experience at Heartlands Hospital. Please be assured this is not the normal standard of services and appropriate steps will be taken.

Could I please ask for you to call me or a member of the team on 0121 424 0808 in Patient Services, so we can start an immediate investigation into the concerns you have raised.

Kind regards


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Response from Mark Newbold, Chief Executive, Heart of England Foundation Trust

picture of Mark Newbold

Dear Deb640

This does sound concerning I am sorry you had such a difficult and worrying time in our hospital. As Iona says, I think we should look into what happened in detail, so please do make contact if you feel able to

With kind regards


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