‘It is wrong on all levels’: Eastbourne hospital patient questions mixed-gender ward

A patient at Eastbourne District General Hospital has expressed concerns after he was placed on a mixed-gender ward overnight.
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David Byrom, 46, from Goole in Yorkshire said he was in Eastbourne for a holiday with his daughter and friends when he was rushed to the hospital on the morning of Thursday, March 23, after he collapsed.

The 46-year-old, who has a history of heart issues, said he was placed in the acute medical unit (AMU) which had five male and one female patient separated by curtains.

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Mr Bryrom, who is unemployed, added: “I even complained to the staff and they said it was due to Covid.

David Byrom, 46, from Goole in Yorkshire.David Byrom, 46, from Goole in Yorkshire.
David Byrom, 46, from Goole in Yorkshire.

“It is wrong on all levels. They said there is nothing they can do.

“This should not be happening in no way shape or form.”

Mr Byrom, who left the hospital the following morning, added: “It is absolutely unacceptable on all levels.

“I would be fuming [if it happened to my daughter], I would be kicking off whether it’s my daughter, my mum or my aunt. I would be kicking off massively.

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“It made me well uncomfortable. It made me so uncomfortable I was trying to tell my daughter.

“I am absolutely disgusted. There are no words to describe it. There is nothing I can say. I think it is a joke.”

However, Mr Byrom praised the A&E workers.

An East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust spokesperson said: "We are committed to protecting the privacy and dignity for all our patients.

"We will always try to treat patients in the right bed in the right specialty and will not mix genders except where it is in the overall best interest of the patient. This would usually relate to specialist treatment, for example critical care. If there is a need to mix, we will explain the reason why."