Sick woman wanders out of hospital

Warwick Hospital
Warwick Hospital

THE husband of a highly-disoriented woman who wandered out of Warwick Hospital early one morning this week and crossed the New England Hwy has asked for answers from Queensland Health.

The woman's husband, who declined to be named, said his wife had been checked in to the hospital on Sunday evening after experiencing a severe reaction due to suspected missed thyroid medication.

He was shocked when his wife appeared at their front door at 6.40am on Monday, barefoot and dressed in a T-shirt and shorts and unable to explain how she had managed to leave the hospital.

The couple's home is on Wallace St a kilometre or so from the hospital, with the husband concerned his wife was able to leave the confines of the building unchecked.

"She was still highly disoriented when she turned up at home and I was surprised she was able to find her way here at all," he said.

"It's crossing four lanes of traffic on the highway that's the biggest concern.

"She told me they had let her out but they hadn't.

"I made her tea and toast and then told her we were going - as in back to hospital - and she asked if we were going on holiday."

The husband said he had been told only two nurses were on duty on Monday morning in the ward his wife was in.

He said she had later been transferred from Warwick to Toowoomba Hospital and was expected to remain there until early next week.

Darling Downs Hospital and Health Service chief executive Dr Peter Bristow said he could not discuss the specifics of the patient's condition without her consent, but said she was receiving treatment in a general ward "with scheduled, regular observations".

"The ward was fully staffed on the night and morning in question and it appears the patient left the hospital at a time between scheduled observations, or when staff were attending to other patients.

"We are investigating this case as a matter of urgency and will offer support to the family in this process."

Topics:  warwick hospital



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