Northdale Hospital accused of negligence after seriously ill patient 'receives no treatment'

2017-02-08 06:03
Marie Botes holds a picture of her late husband. (Nokuthula Khanyile, Maritzburg Fever)

Marie Botes holds a picture of her late husband. (Nokuthula Khanyile, Maritzburg Fever)

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Pietermaritzburg - A mother of three is contemplating life without her husband of 26 years after he died in December from heart failure.

Marie Botes said she wants closure on the death of her husband Waldemar Rosser, who would have celebrated his 52nd birthday on 18 January.

Botes is seeking the Department of Health authorities’ intervention in investigating her husband’s death which she says was as a result of negligence by staff at Northdale Hospital.

The Scottsville resident said her husband was kept at the hospital, but received no treatment for his condition. Botes said there were no doctors available to tend to her husband as she was told they were all on leave.

“My husband was a heart patient. Seven years ago he had a heart bypass operation and half of his heart was not functioning.

“On the morning of 26 December he was fine and asked to lie down. I went into the bedroom to check up on him and noticed his face was drooping like he was suffering a stroke. I called my son and we rushed him to Grey’s Hospital.”

She said when they arrived at Grey’s the doctor, who attended to her husband, sent him for a CT scan which confirmed he had suffered a stroke affecting his right side.

“The doctor told us there were no available beds at Grey’s and that he would transfer him to Northdale.

“When they admitted him at Northdale the nurse on duty told us to leave and visit him the following day as visiting hours were over.”

Botes said she was shocked when she visited her husband the following day and found him in the same state she had left him.

“The level of service there was despicable. When I returned the following day around 3pm I found him still unattended. I was not impressed and ended up asking the nurse on duty why my husband had not received any assistance because he was seriously ill and needed attention.

“The nurse told me they did not know what was wrong with my husband and were waiting for us to arrive. How did they not know about his condition when his file was there? I was the one who collected his main file for the doctors at the clerks section with all his medical history.”

During all this time she said Waldemar’s condition remained critical.

“He could not move or talk. He was not even on a drip, he was not wearing an oxygen mask or connected to a heart monitor. He was restless, could not recognise us and had a disposable nappy on.

“When I asked to speak to a doctor, a sister on duty told me they were short staffed and I should return the following morning to speak to one.”

Upon arriving at the hospital on the morning of 28 December Botes said a nurse called her into a private room to tell her that her husband had died.

“They left him from Monday until Wednesday not bothering to help him, they let him suffer and die. I could have just kept him here at home and let him die here.

“I want to know how the hospital operates with only nursing staff and no doctor supervision. They could have gone the extra mile to save a patient’s life,” she said.

Botes said she wants the hospital to investigate the events surrounding her husband’s death.

“I’m not doing this because I want money, I know there are other patients who go through the same thing and keep quiet, its the reality patients in public hospitals are faced with every day,” she said.

KwaZulu Natal Health Department spokesperson Agiza Hlongwane said the department is investigating the matter.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  health

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