Wolverley woman wants answers from hospital after two 'lost' years

Kidderminster Shuttle: NEEDING ANSWERS: Carole and John Bates. Buy this photo NEEDING ANSWERS: Carole and John Bates.

AN active Wolverley woman nicknamed 'the roadrunner' is appealing to doctors to explain why she went into hospital with a stomach problem and came out unable to walk.

Carole Bates, 61, has made a formal complaint to Worcestershire Royal Hospital about her lack of diagnosis or treatment for her mobility problems, which she believes were caused while she was on a ward nearly two years ago.

Mrs Bates and her husband John, 64, consider there were two "crucial" days in June 2012 when she should have been in intensive care after suffering with acute pancreatitis, pneumonia, kidney failure and respiratory problems.

Instead, Mrs Bates was "left" on a two-bed ward and believes either a "lack of oxygen" caused brain damage or she was over-medicated.

Chief executive for Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust Penny Venables apologised for the couple's concern and admitted that "doctors have so far been unable to offer a formal diagnosis".

Mrs Bates said: "When I was taken to hospital in June 2012 with abdominal pain, doctors were going to send me home but my husband protested and they sent me for an X-ray.

"I was left in the ward for two days until intensive care nurses came and told me my kidneys were shutting down and I had respiratory failure. That was the crucial time.

"I was in and out of hospital from June to December and when I came out I couldn’t walk. I still can’t walk. I can’t get any answers. My doctor kept coming out with all these different diagnoses and tells me to google them.

"We believe that it was either lack of oxygen or they over-dosed me and killed the nerve endings in my legs.

"I can’t drive, I can’t do my job, I’ve lost my voluntary work. I do believe that apart from my stomach, I was fine. They used to call me the roadrunner. I used to cook for elderly people at home. I used to be able to run up the stairs and now, I have to be carried up them."

Mr Bates, who suffered a heart attack in November 2011, has rheumatoid arthritis and struggles to help Mrs Bates around their home.

He said: "We’ve waited almost two years for an explanation but they can’t give us one. They made a mistake, they should put their hands up. We've lost two years of our lives."

Ms Venables said: "We are sorry that Mr and Mrs Bates have had cause for concern during Mrs Bates’ time in our hospital.

“Mrs Bates has a complex medical problem and, as sometimes happens in these cases, doctors have so far been unable to offer a formal diagnosis.

“We remain in regular contact with the couple through our patient liaison team and Mrs Bates’ ongoing hospital appointments.

“Where complaints aren’t resolved I am always happy to meet with patients and their families to discuss these further.”

Mrs Bates has now been transferred to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham for treatment.

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