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

Victoria’s Royal Jubilee Hospital took in two COVID-19 patients from Northern Health as part of a provincial agreement. (Black Press Media file photo)
Victoria hospital takes in two COVID-19 patients from Northern Health

Royal Jubilee Hospital takes patients as part of provincial transport network

An aerial shot of Cedar Valley Lodge this past August, LNG Canada’s newest accommodation for workers. This is where several employees are isolating after a COVID-19 outbreak was declared on Nov. 19. (Photo courtesy of LNG Canada)
52 positive COVID-19 cases now associated with LNG Canada site outbreak

Eight cases still active, 44 considered recovered

pinnacle pellet
Three injured at pellet plant fire

Pinnacle Pellet temporarily suspends operations

Elf on the Shelf 2020 in Burns Lake. (Priyanka Ketkar photo/Lakes District News)
Did you spot the Elf yet?

The festive fun started in Burns Lake last Friday, with little elves… Continue reading

Gas price in PG is at $1.05, much lower than Burns Lake’s $1.13. (Priyanka Ketkar photo/Lakes District News)
What’s going on with gas prices in the north?

A look at gas prices from Prince George to Houston

(Needpix.com)
Pandemic has ‘exacerbated’ concerns for B.C. children and youth with special needs: report

Pandemic worsened an already patchwork system, representative says

Janet Austin, the lieutenant-governor of British Columbia, not seen, swears in Premier John Horgan during a virtual swearing in ceremony in Victoria, Thursday, Nov. 26, 2020. Horgan says he will look to fill gaps in the federal government’s sick-pay benefits program aimed at preventing the spread of COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. premier says province prepared to patch holes in new federal sick-pay benefits

Horgan said workers should not be denied pay when they are preventing COVID-19’s spread

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s coronavirus situation at the legislature, Nov. 30, 2020. (B.C. government)
Hockey team brought COVID-19 back from Alberta, B.C. doctor says

Dr. Bonnie Henry pleads for out-of-province travel to stop

B.C. Premier John Horgan on a conference call with religious leaders from his B.C. legislature office, Nov. 18, 2020, informing them in-person church services are off until further notice. (B.C. government)
B.C. tourism relief coming soon, Premier John Horgan says

Industry leaders to report on their urgent needs next week

An RCMP cruiser looks on as a military search and rescue helicopter winds down near Bridesville, B.C. Tuesday, Dec. 1. Photo courtesy of RCMP Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey
B.C. Mountie, suspect airlifted by Canadian Armed Forces from ravine after foot chase

Military aircraft were dispatched from Comox, B.C., say RCMP

Most Read