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Lis, 69, forced to sleep in Swedish hospital toilet

The Local/gm · 4 Aug 2011, 10:42

Published: 04 Aug 2011 10:42 GMT+02:00

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In Ängleholm in Skåne, a 69-year-old woman was left to eat and sleep in what she described as a disabled toilet.

Lis Davidsen was brought to the hospital one night last month, but because of a lack of suitable beds, the best they could offer her was a room with a toilet for the disabled.

“In the morning, I felt so bad that I couldn’t go to the dining room, so I had to eat my breakfast in the bathroom. That was over the limit,” she told the Kvällsposten newspaper.

The following night nurses managed to move her out of the room, but she was still moved around four times.

At one point, Davidsden was even asked if she would be prepared to share a room with two men because of problems finding suitable bed space on a ward.

When Davidsen was forced to return a week later with an infection, she was told that she would have to go into the “room” once again.

However, her son was so furious at how she had been treated that they found her a bed on another floor of the hospital, she told the newspaper.

According to Annelie Månsson, operations manager for the emergency department at Ängelholm Hospital, Davidsen's description of the room in which she was placed as a "toilet" isn't entirely accurate.

“It is an exaggeration to call the room a 'toilet' as as been suggested," she told The Local.

"It is a hygiene room large enough to fit in a bed. It isn’t ideal but unfortunately we are faced with overcrowding problems and we have to find solutions for it.”

She added that it is safer than leaving patients in corridors because there are bells on the wall so they can call for help.

Story continues below…

Månsson added that overcrowding at Swedish hospitals is a bigger problem than usual at this time of year.

“We are under pressure all year round, but because of the extra numbers of tourists that come in for emergency treatment at this time of year it adds an extra burden for us,” she said.

The Local/gm (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

13:22 August 4, 2011 by Abe L
Given all the preceding horror stories about Swedish healthcare, which is ironically labeled as one of the best in the world, I'm not surprised by such news anymore.

It's flat out ridiculous that with the amount of tax you pay in Sweden that ends up in the healthcare system that such situations arise. It would not shock me one bit if the reason for the overcrowding was due to all doctors and specialists being out fishing in their summerhouses as it's July.

It's been said on this site before, "Don't get in a situation that requires medical-attention in July, you'll be worse off from staying at home".
13:24 August 4, 2011 by andyron2
Cmon Local,It was told to you,that its a large hygiene room with bed,bells n also toilet...doesnt match with typical swedish toilet room.Why dont you believe?
15:38 August 4, 2011 by Rick Methven
Now that the News of the World is no more, it looks like TL are going for the prize for the most lurid headlines in the English press
15:55 August 4, 2011 by andyron2
That brilliant...The new news of the world .Any remote chance of hacking,except the readers mind?
15:56 August 4, 2011 by conboy
Ah yes but Swedish hospital toilet floors are far superior to hospital toilet floors in other countries!!!
16:16 August 4, 2011 by graphixperson
Convert IKEA showrooms into extra hospital housing.
16:46 August 4, 2011 by Kaethar
I have no problem with this story. But I guess some people simply love complaining. I would have no problem in staying in one of those big disabled bathrooms if the hospital was experiencing a shortage of rooms. The amount of rooms a hospital has is based on how many are recquired ON AVERAGE. When something happens (increase of tourists, icy pathways) you can get shortages and you can either accept that fact and move on or whine like a baby.

But for people making this into an argument against socialized healthcare (as always) I do have to point out that this exact same thing would happen without it. Private hospitals run by supply and demand. When roads get icy these hospitals hardly build a new ward overnight. It's not cost-effective since during the vast majority of the year this ward will not be necessary. Rather instances of lack of hospital beds is a statistical anomaly and is treated as such.
17:16 August 4, 2011 by johnny1939
Unless I was dying and then of course I would not care where I was, I think that I would rather take my chances and stay home. No wonder she returned w/ an infection I suppose she got it in the hospital "hygienic room" . "sick tourists" should go home to their own countries if at all possible and not used as an excuse for shoddy treatment of taxpayers. I really don't believe in that story at all. Swedes always have a million excuses for everything they do wrong. . They think that they are the best in the world in everything but we are not particularly when it comes to healthcare for an average person. I hate to think how they might treat non white immigrants.
20:02 August 4, 2011 by jacquelinee
And she made it out alive with her boobs still on. It's a miracle!
22:52 August 4, 2011 by J. L. Belmar
Are they writing about the Karolinska in Stockholm? It looks like that. I was its permanent guest for eight months and believe me, you can get anything there because of their hygienic conditions. I got diahrrea because I sat on an infected toilet and I got a terrible Streptococus infection, that they had to make another by-pass on my left leg and after doing it, they cutted the infected by-pass. It is a miracle I am still alive because, believe me, during eight months I have the impression that they were trying to murder me.

Right now, they are facing a huge complaint made by me to the so-called "Socialstyrelsen".

I am quite sure that the "doctors" who committed so many stupidities in both of my legs, will be exonerated because, well, simply because I am a foreigner and they are Swede eminencies. Yes, but of course!

I never imagine that because it is not cost effective, they send people to sleep in a toilet, on the floor, wherever. But that is your way of thinking, so, keep on. I truly hope that you will not fall in the hands of the system the way I did for eight long months.

@16:46 August 4, 2011 by Kaethar

You should really read what is happening here in Sweden. It is not a matter that some like to complain. It is simply that the health system in Sweden, no matter that you do not pay too much money to be cured, is sinking and sinking and sinking.

Good for you if you would not have any problems with
05:04 August 5, 2011 by Douglas Garner
In any case, a less than typical ROOM is better than being left out in the hall as I have seen many times here in Gävle.
08:21 August 5, 2011 by tuerd1982
I was been in Swedish hospital, and I still praising their facility, personnel and their attitude. I think there might be misunderstanding exist or it might be some thing else....
09:20 August 5, 2011 by cogito
But Swedish toilet floors are Best in the World.

At least she didn't have vomit stuffed down her throat (see recent TL story on nursing home for the elderly).

Or have her breast cut off by mistake (see recent TL story).

@Kaether #7. Swedes are brainwashed to think that complaining is bad.

TL and the complainers are doing Swedes a great service. Complaining loud enough and often enough might push them to raise the standards of Swedish healthcare.

Do you really prefer that all the many examples of the poor standards of Swedish health care be swept under the carpet?

Ignorance is not bliss. The more transparency the better.
09:33 August 5, 2011 by J. L. Belmar
#14 09:20 August 5, 2011 by cogito

Yours is a damn good post.

01:43 August 5, 2011 by tina11

Do you know something about irony? Don't take it wrong, please, so we do not start throwing stones at each other.
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