AN MP has told how his father tragically died in his arms after being sent home from an over-crowded University Hospital in Coventry.
Toby Perkins, MP for Chesterfield, told a Commons debate on the NHS how his father was sent home from A&E at UHCW in ‘extreme pain’ after suffering an aneurysm.
The department registrar sent his father home in a taxi after he had been waiting in A&E for five hours, saying they did not have a bed to admit him.
He died in Mr Perkins’ arms four days later.
Speaking emotionally in the House of Commons, he said: “Last year, on Friday, July 15, my father died of an aneurysm.
“Four days earlier, he had been sent home from the A&E department at Coventry and Warwickshire hospital with what a vascular surgeon described at my father’s inquest as ‘classical aneurysm symptoms’
“With a history of vascular problems and a previous near-fatal aneurysm, he presented at the hospital’s A&E department, suffering extreme pain in his right groin, radiating to side and back.
“He was described as being confused and uncommunicative.
“Yet, after five hours in A&E, he was sent home in a taxi.
“Four days later, he died in my arms.”
During the inquest into his death, the hospital registrar said it had been a ‘non-stop’ afternoon where he was having to send sick people home who should have been in hospital beds.
He had asked Mr Perkins’ father if he minded going home and when he did not object, he put him in a taxi.
Mr Perkins’ father had suffered a near-fatal aneurysm three years earlier while on holiday in Germany.
He added: “I am ashamed to say that I’m grateful that my father experience his first life-threatening aneurysm on holiday.
“The quality of the emergency care that he received in Munich saved his life and gave us, his family, three more years with him.
“I regret the same could not be said of our NHS.”
Mr Perkins was speaking to MPs amid what some are calling the most serious crisis in the NHS’ history.
A&E waiting times are on the rise and frontline doctors, nurses and GPs say they are close to breaking under the pressure.
Apologising to Mr Perkins and his family, a spokesperson for University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust said: “Although the inquest found his father died of natural causes, we are clear that he should not have been discharged without a scan and we have changed our practice so that where there is a suspected aneurysm, as there was with his father, a scan will be done to rule it out in the first instance
“We have also increased training for the surgical teams who see patients in the emergency department.
“While we acknowledge this is too late for his father we hope it provides some comfort to Mr Perkins and his family.”