Trust apologises after pensioner waits almost three days for bed in ward
A HEALTH trust has apologised after a 79-year-old woman with pneumonia was forced to wait almost three days to be admitted to a hospital ward.
The pensioner was taken by ambulance to the Emergency Department of Daisy Hill Hospital in Newry on Saturday evening.
However, she was only taken to a ward at around 1.30pm on Tuesday - 67 hours after she went to hospital.
The Southern Health Trust told the BBC the lengthy wait was unacceptable and apologised.
The woman's family described her ordeal as "horrendous".
In a statement, they said they were not angry at medical staff and blamed the political impasse for the continued crisis in the health service.
"Our anger is in no way directed at the hospital staff, but instead at Stormont," they said.
"This crisis is a direct result of our lack of government and we would urge all politicians to get a government running again as soon as possible."
Earlier this month The Irish News revealed that one patient was forced to wait for more than two days in A&E over the Christmas period in one of the worst delays in recent years across the NHS.
Meanwhile, a deadly strain of legionella bacteria has been found in a Co Antrim nursing home's plumbing system.
Broadways Nursing Home in Larne is replacing its entire water system after the outbreak was discovered in November.
The Regulation and Quality Improvement Authority (RQIA) said although the bacteria was discovered there has not been an outbreak of legionnaire's disease - a potentially fatal type of pneumonia.
Some taps at the home are no longer being used and others have been restricted as a precaution, the RQIA said.