Disabilty Now reports Spinal Injury Association concerns over lack of hospital beds for spinal injury victims

In: NHS issues
On: 19/03/2008


Disability Now's report appears in full and we have included a link to this story and the Disability Now website.

Michelmores’ clinical negligence team has a special interest in claims arising from the treatment and management of spinal injuries. The team includes a solicitor who previously pursued a career as a neurophysiotherapist and herself suffered a severe spinal injury.
Hospital beds call after Peer’s death
By Elizabeth Choppin
Click Here to go to the Disability Now website.
The death of a popular disabled peer has raised new concerns about a shortage of specialist hospital beds for people with spinal cord injuries.
Baroness (Davina) Darcy de Knayth died on 24 February, after being turned away from The National Spinal Injuries Centre (NSIC) at Stoke Mandeville Hospital.
The Spinal Injuries Association (SIA) said there were only 400 specialist beds across the UK, so people with spinal cord injuries were frequently being turned away.
Baroness Darcy de Knayth was believed to have asked to be admitted to Stoke Mandeville when she became ill, but was turned away and later admitted to Wexham Park Hospital in nearby Slough. She died two days later.
Baroness Masham of Ilton, who is president of the SIA, told the House of Lords that Stoke Mandeville, where the Baroness had previously been treated, was unable to admit her "for some reason yet to be explained".
She added: "As president of the Spinal Injuries Association, I will be asking the government to review the very inadequate facilities for the 6,000 people living with the results of spinal injuries, especially in the south of England."
She also said that Wexham Park Hospital "unfortunately was not equipped to deal with a seriously ill person with spinal injuries".
A spokesman for Buckinghamshire Hospitals NHS Trust, which runs Stoke Mandeville, said: "We would welcome the opportunity to meet with Baroness Masham in order for us to respond to her concerns directly."

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