Cancer diagnosed, no treatment

2011-08-29 00:00

A PALM Beach resident is up in arms about apparent neglect at the Port Shepstone Provincial Hospital. Teresa Pastor approached The Witness with her experiences to expose what she calls the shoddy treatment that her 78-year-old mother has been subjected to.

Pastor’s mother, Louise Brazier, has been treated at the hospital over many years for various ailments. In June last year Brazier started passing blood with her stools.

“My mother is treated with warfarin [a blood thinner] and has to avoid bleeding.”

Alarmed by the bleeding, Pastor immediately took her mother to the hospital for medical attention. She said that after a year of visits, only in June was her mother diagnosed in June with borderline cancer of the colon.

“They found some growths on her colon in January and to date she has not received any treatment or medication.”

Pastor said that as a result her mother had been hospitalised twice this year, in February and April. “The only medication she received was some antibiotics after she was discharged in April because they had done a colonoscopy.”

Pastor said that in the last year the hospital has issued her mother with the wrong cardiac medication and has lost her blood results and X-rays. “These people are playing with my mother’s life. Do they want her to just die with cancer?”

After her diagnosis in June Brazier was referred to Albert Luthuli Hospital for treatment last Wednesday. “When we arrived at the oncology department we were told that all the doctors were at a seminar and she would not get treated. They also said that [as] my mother was a first-time patient at the hospital they did not have our details to inform us.”

Pastor said that they left the hospital with her mother not even having her blood pressure checked. “After putting up a fight with the attendant there I managed to secure an appointment in two weeks’ time.”

Pastor said her mother’s health has deteriorated significantly with the lack of medical treatment.

“At times we spent up to eight hours in hospital being sent up and down. I am a fit person and at the end of the day I am exhausted. I can only imagine how a sick person feels.”

She has written a letter to the hospital citing her complaints about the neglect, dated May 10, 2011, and has still not received a response. She went to the hospital’s public relations department on Thursday, she said, “and my letter is sitting there in a desk drawer with no attached response or indication that they have even attempted to address my grievances”.

No comment was received from the hospital at the time of going to press.

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