Heart at­tack pa­tient’s 20-hour wait for hos­pi­tal bed

Cllr thanks for mes­sages of sup­port as her hus­band, a pop­u­lar po­lice of­fi­cer, is on the mend

North Wales Weekly News - - FRONT PAGE - BY DAVID POW­ELL

APO­LICE of­fi­cer who suf­fered a heart at­tack spent 20 hours on a trol­ley wait­ing for a hos­pi­tal bed.

PC Mike Smith spent all night at Ys­byty Gwynedd, Ban­gor on the “small and un­com­fort­able” trol­ley af­ter he was taken ill while on duty at Llan­dudno po­lice sta­tion.

His wife, Conwy County coun­cil­lor Julie Fal­lon, said that when he was ad­mit­ted last Wed­nes­day there was not one bed avail­able “in the whole hos­pi­tal”.

As a re­sult she has made an of­fi­cial com­plaint to the Betsi Cad­wal­adr Univer­sity Health Board.

The health board has ac­knowl­edged that the Ban­gor hos­pi­tal has been “par­tic­u­larly busy over the last few weeks”.

Cllr Fal­lon said: “Mike had the heart at­tack whilst he was on duty. It was scary.

“He spent all night on a trol­ley af­ter hav­ing a heart at­tack. He’s six foot three, and the trol­leys are small and un­com­fort­able. There was not a bed in the whole hos­pi­tal.

“It was ac­tu­ally 20 hours from when he ar­rived (be­fore he got a bed). ”

Cllr Fal­lon praised the treat­ment her hus­band had re­ceived from the “fan­tas­tic” hos­pi­tal staff but was ap­palled at the wait for a bed.

“I had to make an of­fi­cial com­plaint as he got to A&E on Wed­nes­day lunchtime and was still wait­ing for a bed on a ward (at) Thurs­day lunchtime.”

She said the heart at­tack which had come as a “to­tal shock” to the 41-year-old dadof-three who is a coach of Llan­dudno FC’s un­der-11 team.

“A blood clot caused the heart at­tack – it was not his lifestyle – and his ar­ter­ies are clear.

“He will be on med­i­ca­tion for life but it’s a small price to pay.”

PC Smith was dis­charged on Tues­day and is mak­ing a re­cov­ery.

A spokes­woman for the health board said: “We are un­able to com­ment on the treat­ment and care of in­di­vid­ual pa­tients.

“We have re­ceived a con­cern from Coun­cil­lor Fal­lon which is cur­rently be­ing in­ves­ti­gated. We will re­spond di­rectly to Coun­cil­lor Fal­lon and her hus­band once the in­ves­ti­ga­tion is com­plete.

“We would like to apol­o­gise to any pa­tient who has ex­pe­ri­enced long waits at our Emer­gency De­part­ments over re­cent weeks. Our hos­pi­tals are con­tin­u­ing to face high de­mands at their Emer­gency De­part­ments and Ys­byty Gwynedd has been par­tic­u­larly busy over the last few weeks.

“Emer­gency pres­sures do fluc­tu­ate dur­ing the day, and from day to day, with pe­ri­ods of high de­mand caus­ing dif­fi­cul­ties in en­sur­ing that pa­tients can move through the hos­pi­tal sys­tem in the nor­mal way. How­ever pa­tient safety is our top pri­or­ity, and all pa­tients are kept safe whilst wait­ing to be seen. Pa­tients are as­sessed on ar­rival and those with the most ur­gent clin­i­cal needs are treated as a pri­or­ity.”

Cllr Fal­lon also thanked the public for mes­sages of sup­port for her hus­band, a di­rec­tor of Llan­dudno FC, from friends and fam­ily “all over the world”.

“It’s just been won­der­ful. It’s re­ally made a mas­sive dif­fer­ence to his re­cov­ery and it’s made him feel loved.”

She added: “It seems that ev­ery football club has posted re­ally lov­ing com­ments.”

Pop­u­lar po­lice of­fi­cer and coach of

Llan­dudno FC’s un­der-11 team Mike

Smith, with his chil­dren l-r Grace, Chloe and Adam

Mike Smith with his chil­dren (left to right) Grace, Chloe and Adam

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