Woman ‘horrified’ after being told to trek 200 kilometres home from Kamloops hospital

Woman ‘horrified’ after being told to trek 200 kilometres home from Kamloops hospital

‘I can’t get from Kamloops back to 100 Mile House injured, confused… no shoes, no clothes whatsoever’

A South Cariboo woman is raising concerns about the way out-of-area patients are being discharged from the hospital in Kamloops.

Olivia Fletcher was involved in a rollover crash outside the community of Clinton on Nov. 15.

“I was pinned in the vehicle. I ended up with quite a few injuries. They decided that they needed to send me to Kamloops.”

The first responders cut off her clothes in order to treat her, and rushed her off to Royal Inland Hospital.

“I went to Kamloops and, I mean, the care was fine while I was there,” Fletcher said. “At [1 p.m.], they told me – keep in mind I have no shoes, no clothes whatsoever – they told me that I’m being released to the streets and I have to find my own way.”

She said there was “no way” she could get back to 100 Mile House on her own, not only because she had nothing of her own to wear and because she was on pain medication for a concussion.

According to Fletcher, hospital staff told her that’s the way it is.

“I made it very clear that that was not going to be happening and that the only people taking me home would be them or a news crew because this is not acceptable.”

After fighting with staff for five hours, she said, they gave her a $400 taxi voucher.

Now, Fletcher said she worries about other patients, because not everyone will fight for and get that ride home.

Tracey Rannie, Royal Inland’s executive director of clinical operations, said she could not comment on a specific patient, but that staff follow proper discharge procedures.

“Discharges from hospital are planned with the patient, physician and care team, and would include involvement of a social worker if a patient has specific needs or challenges,” Rannie said.

Staff do provide patients with options, including taxi vouchers, if they cannot get a ride from family or friends, she said.

“Clothing and shoes are offered if an individual arrives without their own.”

Cariboo-Chilcotin MLA Donna Barnett said it’s been this way as long as she can remember, but it seems to be getting worse.

“We have a transportation system, but it’s only two days a week,” Barnett said.

“I think that these things need to be looked into and that there needs to be more care taken with people from rural British Columbia who don’t have access to taxis and buses and things like that as much like cities do.”

Fletcher agreed.

“I’m horrified,” she said. “You can’t even call yourself a nurse if you’re willing to go out of the way to get [patients] to where they need to be [only to] throw them out into the cold street.”

RELATED: Frustration at the fore at Interior Health public meeting

It’s not the first time the issue of discharges has been raised.

At an Interior Health public meeting in Ashcroft on Oct. 18, one member of the public said he had a health situation that sometimes takes him to Kamloops.

“The last time I was there, I was discharged at 3 a.m. Who do I call?”

– with files from Barbara Roden


newsroom@100milefreepress.net

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

The receipt for the ride home to 100 Mile House. Submitted photo.

The receipt for the ride home to 100 Mile House. Submitted photo.

Just Posted

Kwalikum Secondary School. (SD69 photo)
Schools superintendent says protocols don’t change after COVID-19 exposure at Qualicum Beach high school

Elder: ‘We were assured by the Health Authority that the school is safe’

Tigh-Na-Mara Seaside Spa Resort general manager Paul Drummond, right, and SOS executive director Susanna Newton with some of the gifts left during the resort’s annual Toy Drive. (Peter McCully photo)
Tigh-Na-Mara Toy Drive in Parksville a rousing success

More than 1,200 toys, 16 bikes and $13K in cash/gift cards donated

Nurse Doreen Littlejohn takes a longterm approach in her outreach work with homelessness in Parksville Qualicum Beach, but says more needs to be done now. (Auren Ruvinsky photo)
‘Women face a much different experience on the street’: Parksville Qualicum Beach nurse

Littlejohn says community needs to be part of solution to homelessness

Parksville’s French Creek Harbour experienced a diesel spill on Nov. 23 after a barge and fishing vessel collided. (Mandy Moraes photo)
Coast Guard cleans up diesel spill in Parksville’s French Creek Harbour

Barge carrying fuel truck collides with fishing vessel

Qualicum Beach Memorial Golf Course. (File photo)
Qualicum Beach golf course notified restaurant patron tests positive for COVID-19

Staff to self-monitor until Nov. 28, can continue with daily duties

A man wearing a face mask to help curb the spread of COVID-19 walks in downtown Vancouver, B.C., Sunday, Nov. 22, 2020. The use of masks is mandatory in indoor public and retail spaces in the province. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. records deadliest day of pandemic with 13 deaths, 738 new COVID-19 cases

Number of people in hospital is nearing 300, while total cases near 30,000

(File photo)
Alberta woman charged after allegedly hitting boy with watermelon at Okanagan campsite

Police say a disagreement among friends at an Adams Lake campsite turned ugly

Court of Appeal for British Columbia in Vancouver. (File photo: Tom Zytaruk)
B.C. woman loses appeal to have second child by using late husband’s sperm

Assisted Human Reproduction Act prohibits the removal of human reproductive material from a donor without consent

Krista Macinnis displays the homework assignment that her Grade 6 daughter received on Tuesday. (Submitted photo)
B.C. mom angry that students asked to list positive stories about residential schools

Daughter’s Grade 6 class asked to write down 5 positive stories or facts

B.C. projects targeting the restoration of sockeye salmon stocks in the Fraser and Columbia Watersheds will share in $10.9 million of federal funding to protect species at risk. (Kenny Regan photo)
13 projects protecting B.C. aquatic species at risk receive $11 million in federal funding

Salmon and marine mammals expected to benefit from ecosystem-based approach

Picture of two swans leaving the Cowichan estuary moments before one was shot out of the sky. (Submitted photo)
Petition to stop hunting in Cowichan estuary after swan shot

Hunters blame shooting on illegal poachers

Bob Higgins pulls the gate across on the elevator built inside his home. (Photo by Don Bodger)
Island man’s expertise earns international award with home-built elevator

Experience put to use in winning contest entry for furniture and home projects

Barrels pictured outside Oliver winery, Quinta Ferreira, in May. (Phil McLachlan - Black Press Media)
B.C. Master of Wine reflects on industry’s teetering economic state

Pandemic, for some wine makers, has been a blessing in disguise. For others, not so much.

Most Read