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Royal Sussex hospital visitor shares lift with dead body
A hospital has apologised after a visitor found she was sharing a public lift with a dead body.
The complaint was sent to the Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton by a woman who had been visiting to see her mother.
The body was being transported to the hospital morgue during the incident last month.
The woman, who had been regularly visiting the Royal Sussex during her mother’s stay, said: “Today I shared a lift with someone who had just passed away. The transporting bed covered in a blue plastic sheet.
“Thank God there were no children around. Where was the dignity for someone who has just died?
“I very much doubt their family would have appreciated the way their loved one was treated.”
The woman said there were a number of other issues about the hospital’s lifts which she had concerns with.
She said: “There have been women/men patients with catheters, colostomy bags and oxygen bottles.
“Then the laundry and the cleaning buckets and food from the kitchens, plus visitors, some with children and strollers, all packed into a lift.
“These patients have no dignity, just sitting in their wheelchairs covered by a flimsy blanket.”
The woman called for more to be done to make sure patients were transported separately and did not end up being crammed into lifts used by everyone.
Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust, which runs the hospital, says it does have separate lift not for general public use, which is used for transporting patients.
He apologised for the incident involving the body in the lift.
He said: “This should never happen and we apologise for the distress this has caused.
“The member of staff transporting the deceased patient should have ensured they did not share a lift with a member of the public.”
There are also plans to improve access to lifts at the hospital as part of its planned £420 million redevelopment.
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