Grantham pensioner pays £80 to get home from A&E

Peter Clawson had to wait over six hours to be seen at A&E in Lincoln.
Peter Clawson had to wait over six hours to be seen at A&E in Lincoln.
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A 77-year-old man was left stranded at Lincoln Hospital after being transferred from Grantham Accident and Emergency (A&E) on Christmas Day.

After suffering from a heavily bleeding ear as a result of recurrence of cancer of the ear, Peter Clawson, of Riverside flats, Welham Street, contacted 111 who sent him to Grantham Hospital.

However, due to a lack of facilities, staff at A&E arranged for an ambulance to take Peter to Lincoln Hospital to receive treatment.

Peter said: “As I am unable to drive, Grantham phoned ahead to Lincoln who promised that however long I was there for, I would be brought back by hospital transport.”

After sharing the ambulance with another patient, Peter arrived at Lincoln’s busy A&E department at 7pm on Christmas Day, where he waited over six hours to see a member of the ear, nose and throat team.

Peter added: “There was no proper food available either to buy, just a chocolate machine, a coffee machine and a water fountain. I was forced to take some of my medical tablets on an empty stomach.”

When Peter was eventually seen, the doctor said that there was nothing that could be done at that time and to return to the clinic in a few days time.

Having not eaten since he had left his home 14 hours before, Peter enquired about his transport home, only to be told that it was against their rules. Peter said: “The nurse told me that I could wait for an ambulance if I wished to but the minimum delay would be five hours with no guarantee of actually being allowed on board.”

Faced with the prospect of a further wait with nothing to eat, Peter was forced to pay £80 for a taxi back to Grantham, eventually arriving home just before 3am on Boxing Day.

Peter added: “The whole ordeal was horrendeous ... and I missed my Christmas dinner!”

A hospital spokesperson said: “We are disappointed to hear that Mr Clawson was not happy with some aspects of his care. If he would like to get in touch with us, we would be able to investigate his concerns.”