An 82-year-old man visited Arima Hospital to try to alleviate the pain caused by his catheter, but ended up held at Caura Hospital as a suspected case of covid19. Newsday learnt of his plight on Good Friday from his in-law. The man, who suffers prostate problems and is bedridden, was in severe pain on Saturday night.
This was thought to be due to the need to change the catheter, an inserted device which alleviates the need for regular treks to the washroom. “I called the ambulance and in the wee hours of Sunday morning he was taken to Arima Hospital. We waited one hour outside.
“My cousin, his wife, was told she cannot see him, as he is in isolation. We got no other information as to why he was in isolation.” The in-law had simply thought the need for isolation was due to his existing prostate problems. The patient was later transferred to Mount Hope Hospital, where his in-law and wife visited him the next day. “We could not go in as he was isolated. We dropped off bags of food for him. I was told to return on Monday.
“However, heading back to Arima, the same representative we had just spoken to called me to say he was going to be transferred to Caura. She didn’t know why.” The in-law called Caura Hospital to learn the man was deemed “covid curious,” as someone thought to be in touch with a person who had recently travelled abroad.
“On Wednesday we dropped things for him at Caura Hospital, unaware he had already been sent back to Mount Hope. His niece called and found out he was back in Mount Hope.” The in-law couldn’t understand all the shuttling around of the patient.
“On Tuesday they had a confrontation at Caura. Staff were talking loudly among themselves. They said there was a mix-up. They transferred him back to Mount Hope. He told us he never told them anything except that his catheter needs to change and that he was in so much pain.
“It’s like they bring me here to die,” she recalled he had told her. “Why are you not letting me have a phone-call?” Having spent the period from Monday evening to Tuesday evening at Caura, he was taken back to Mount Hope. She admitted that he had some concerns about exposure to covid19 in his stay at Caura where positive patients are lodged.
“They did test him at Caura. He tested negative,” the in-law said. Asked if he plans to lodge any complaint, she said, “Right now, he’s just happy to get out and to be okay.” Otherwise, the in-law said the process was unusual in that after the authorities sent the man to Caura on suspicion of covid19, they had not contacted his relatives to advise them to start to self-isolate/quarantine themselves.” As she spoke she awaited his return home from Mount Hope.