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Blackburn patient sent home by taxi in his pyjamas
A DISABLED man has hit out at the Royal Blackburn Hospital after he was sent home in a taxi wearing only pyjamas.
Neil McGregor, 50, suffered an epileptic fit in bed at his sheltered accommodation in Crosby Road, Blackburn, but managed to press an alert button.
He said he was unable to take anything with him to hospital after passing out before paramedics could arrive.
He was changed into a dressing gown on arrival at the A&E department last Sunday, and was discharged from the medical assessment unit just before 1pm on Monday after undergoing tests.
He said he was given pyjamas, and then asked to make his way to the taxi collection area outside the hospital’s main entrance.
He was unable to contact any friends, or family, for help as their contact numbers were at his house.
Mr McGregor, a father-of-one, said: “I couldn’t believe that I was expected to wait for a taxi in reception, wearing just pyjamas.
“I asked a nurse if she could sort it out for the taxi to come to the ambulance drop-off at A&E, which is a bit more private, which she did.
“Then when I got home, I had to go into the house to get my money out. I asked the taxi driver to come to the house with me, so I wouldn’t have to go outside again in the pyjamas in front of all of the street in the middle of the day.
“Whenever anything like this has happened before, I’ve always been able to get patient transport home, which has been a lot more dignified. It’s bad enough this has happened to me, but I’d hate to think that a woman was put in that position.”
Lynn Wissett, deputy chief exe-cutive of East Lancashire Hosp-itals NHS Trust, said: “Hospital transport is only provided for those patients whose mobility, or medical condition, makes it diff-icult, or impossible, for them to use private, or public, transport.
“A patient’s eligibility for pat-ient transport is determined by a healthcare professional using a set of criteria provided by the North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust.
“Those who do not have a gen-uine need for non-emergency patient transport are advised on what other means are available to them, such as public transport.
“The Trust aims to ensure the privacy and dignity of all our patients.
“In circumstances where pat-ients are admitted to A&E with-out personal belongings and subsequently discharged, staff make every effort to maintain patient dignity through use of gowns, pyjamas and blankets.”