'Hospital looked like a building site': Patient claims bed at private Rowley Hall surrounded by wet plaster and dust
PLASTERER Gary Shaw was stunned to find the plush private hospital he was sent to for surgery by the NHS had been turned into a 'building site.'
The 30-year-old claimed he had to recover from his operation in a bed surrounded by dust covering the carpets, wet plaster and radiators hanging off walls.
He said there were even signs outside his room at Stafford's Rowley Hall Hospital warning that construction work was in progress and safety helmets must be worn at all times.
Now Gary, from Eaton Park, has contacted a solicitor and made a formal complaint against the hospital which charges £2,000 for the colon surgery he needed.
The father-of-one said: "I woke up after the operation, looked round my room and thought I was back on site. There was so much banging and crashing I couldn't get any rest.
"I'm worried the wound could have been infected because I spent around 10 hours on what felt like a building site."
Gary had been referred to Rowley Hall by his GP after waiting so long for the procedure at the University Hospital of North Staffordshire he was left in agony.
It went ahead last week – although yesterday he received a letter from the UHNS asking him to go there for the same treatment. Gary's father, Graham, aged 61, said: "I took the camera because I wanted to show friends what luxury he had been given on the NHS – I could not believe it was the absolute opposite.
"As well as wires hanging down, there was constant hammering and drilling."
Gary, a recovering heroin addict, was sent to Rowley Hall in line with Government rules that all patients must be treated within 18 weeks. GPs are allowed to refer patients to the private sector under a policy called 'Patient Choice'.
The NHS then picks up the bill so Stoke-on-Trent Primary Care Trust will be invoiced for Gary's treatment.
He said: "I have been off heroin for a year and turned my life around to get a trustworthy job. But I have been off for three months now and am losing £500 a week.I daren't think what I could have been breathing in and I have had a cough since. I think there might be a health and safety risk."
Gloria Kerrigan, general manager of the hospital, confirmed an investigation was now underway.
She said: "Rowley Hall is at the moment part-way through a refurbishment programme, where the patient bedrooms and receptions are being upgraded to make them a nicer facility.
"The areas are cordoned off, but inevitably there is a degree of disruption, and we have worked hard to minimise the impact.
"I'm sorry this gentlemen wasn't happy during his stay."