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Roof tile falls in above patient at King's Lynn hospital



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The parlous state of Lynn’s Queen Elizabeth Hospital has been demonstrated again this week after a roof tile fell while a patient sat below.

The Lynn News has fully backed the campaign to have the hospital rebuilt as it is now 10 years past the date when it should have been replaced.

A furious Thomas George, of Lynn, says he felt humiliated by the incident and that he was splashed with brown water this week after the tile came down on Wednesday.

Thomas George witnessed the roof tile falling, and said the water had 'brown bits in it' Credit Thomas George (52253022)
Thomas George witnessed the roof tile falling, and said the water had 'brown bits in it' Credit Thomas George (52253022)

He said the water covered his jeans and shoes - but the hospital strongly contests that the water was in any way unclean.

Mr George said: “It’s a miracle it didn’t hit anyone, to be honest, as it was right by the doors.

“The water was brown with bits floating in it, there was no mistaking it.”

Thomas George witnessed the roof tile falling, and said the water had 'brown bits in it' Credit Thomas George (52253025)
Thomas George witnessed the roof tile falling, and said the water had 'brown bits in it' Credit Thomas George (52253025)

Staff cleared the mess but Mr George was left covered in the unknown substance.

He said: “I kept asking what is it though? No one would tell me and some staff didn’t seem concerned.

“A maintenance man arrived to check the roof and said very loudly and clearly ‘that’s toilet water’, I felt disgusted.

“No one offered me a tissue or a wipe to clean myself, it was humiliating.”

King's Lynn's Queen Elizabeth Hospital (44258285)
King's Lynn's Queen Elizabeth Hospital (44258285)

Mr George was in the QEH a total of six hours and then made his way home to clean himself up.

He said: “ I totally understand that the nurses are busy, and respect what they do - ultimately it’s not their fault.

“But something needs to be done. I was right by the Covid red ward - there are some seriously ill people in there and they could have become infected if they came into contact with that water. The tile next to it looked precarious too.”

Nurses on the ward told him the water was “clean” but Mr George said: “I’m sorry they can say it’s clean, but clean water isn’t brown.”

Councillor Jo Rust, who has been campaigning for a new hospital, said: “This worsening situation is not going to get any better, yet we still have to wait months to find out if our bid has been successful and to what extent - option one a total new build or option two, a less than satisfactory phased redevelopment which won’t meet our growing needs.

“We don’t even know at this stage whether we’re on the shortlist for funding for a new hospital.

“Yet the hospital is literally falling down on patients and staff.

“We’ve been badly let down by previous trust managers and our former MP who should have started this process off over a decade ago.

“As this didn’t happen staff and patients are now facing danger which will only get worse the longer we have to wait.

“Full funding should be given the same priority as the government are giving big business who are claiming they can’t afford to keep the lights on. Fund it now and fund it fully.”

Alice Webster, chief nurse at the QEH, said: “Alice Webster, Chief Nurse at QEH commented: “We checked on the Mr George’s wellbeing and apologised at the time and we have since made further contact with Mr George to discuss his concerns. We’ve confirmed that he was not hit by the ceiling tile, but that it fell near him.”



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