Blunder as confidential files sent home with infirm Norbury patient
Confidential medical documents have been found bundled together with an infirm hospital patient’s clothes in a plastic bag by her outraged husband.
82-year-old Angela Holness and her husband Louis, 80, were shocked to find her medical file, stamped "Not To Be Removed From Health Authority Premises" at the bottom of a bag of her clothes.
Mrs Holness, Pollards Hill North, Norbury, had been sent home from Croydon University Hospital in surgical gowns, rather than being helped to change following a routine physio appointment on March 30.
Mr Holness said: "I opened the door and she was there in just a gown holding a bag with her clothes.
"I couldn’t believe it. It got worse when I went through the bag and found her medical file.
"This is supposed to be confidential and they have just thrown it in a bag which anyone could have picked up. It is terrible. With it here, do they now have no record of her there?"
Mrs Holness, who suffers from diabetes and has had limited mobility for ten years, blamed the problem on lack of staff.
She said: "The whole place just seems to be really struggling.
"After they saw me they stuck me in a ward and just left me.
"The staff there are lovely but there don’t seem to be enough."
Mr Holness lodged a complaint on April 4 and the hospital sent a taxi to collect the file.
He said: "They asked if I could bring it around - I said you have to be joking, you sent it, you come and get it."
A spokesman for the hospital said: "We were sorry to learn of the error regarding Mrs Holness’s notes. We have since arranged for their safe and secure return and offered a full apology.
"We have also begun an investigation into the circumstances of her discharge and will contact them to offer a full explanation when we have had time to find out all the facts."