Family anger at mother’s plight

West Suffolk Hospital
West Suffolk Hospital
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When Valerie Robshaw was moved from a hospital less than a mile from home to one 34 miles away she was told it would be for a couple of days.

But after 12 days her angry son Paul threatened to take her out of Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge, and go to West Suffolk Hospital’s (WSH) A and E to get her readmitted there to save his father Tony the stress of the 70 mile round trip.

“They’ve been together for more than half a century and they don’t want to be apart,” Paul said. “My dad has left there two or three times in tears because my mum was upset when he had to go.”

Valerie, 74, has several complaints, including leukaemia, and on April 7 WSH said she had fluid on the spine and needed to go to Addenbrookes.

But Paul says that when she was fit to return to WSH, neither he nor Addenbrookes could get the hospital to take her, due to a bed shortage.

He said: “I phoned them 21 times — they just didn’t care.”

After Paul threatened to move her, a sister at Addenbrooke’s arranged for Valerie to be fitted with a tube to allow drugs to be administered by a district nurse at home.

A WSH spokesman said: “As the hospital was very busy, we were unfortunately unable to transfer Mrs Robshaw back to West Suffolk and are sorry that this caused distress to her or her family.”