Daughter's emotional plea for help as South Shields pensioner is stranded in Italian hospital
A devastated daughter has issued an emotional plea for her 90-year-old mother to be finally brought home after she was left stranded in an Italian hospital for over two weeks.
Jane Bradshaw, from Madeira Terrace, South Shields, booked a week-long stay in Sorrento, Italy, to toast her beloved mum Elsie’s 90th birthday - but the dream trip soon turned to holiday hell when the pensioner broke her hip in a fall just 12 hours after landing in the country.
Miss Bradshaw, 51, says her stricken mum was left on a hospital trolley for 36 hours before finally being given a bed.
She says she is desperate for her mum to be flown home as she is ‘getting worse every day’ in a medical facility with no air conditioning in searing temperatures, ear-piercing sirens blaring throughout the day, graffiti etched on doors, medical equipment strewn on the floor and a ward room with no curtains for privacy.
She says her mother is only being given two injections a day - while her pleas for water and pain relief from hospital staff are falling on deaf ears.
Miss Bradshaw has urged her mother’s travel insurance company Just Travel Insurance to fly her home for treatment in the UK - but says her agony was extended when the firm reversed a decision to transport her back.
She says surgeons in Italy recommended she have an operation in the UK.
She says the company agreed to fund the flight home last Tuesday - only to change their minds just three days later.
She is now due to have surgery on Thursday after doctors told her family it was too dangerous to wait any longer.
Miss Bradshaw, who lives with her mum, said; “It has been absolutely horrendous. My mother is a tough cookie but this is breaking her and me.
“She is getting worse by the day. I visited her on the ward and she just burst into tears.
“I just want to get her home.
“I feel like I am having a nervous breakdown.
“I have sent over my mum’s medical records from the hospital but at first they said they didn’t receive them.
“I have spent over 120 euros on the phone to them trying to sort this out.
“They agreed to fly her home initially so an operation was cancelled last Tuesday.
“Now they are saying she can have the operation in Italy, so she has had to stay more than an extra week in hospital because of this in awful conditions.
“How can they treat a 90-year-old woman like this.
“We have been told she will need to stay in hospital for ten days to recover, so she will have been in hospital for nearly a month.”
Miss Bradshaw has contacted the British Consulate which she says are pressing the insurance company to cover the cost of transporting her mum home.
She says she is now in limbo - unsure how her mother will get back to the UK once she is finally released from her hospital horror.
Miss Bradshaw was initially due to fly home on June 13, but is now staying in Italy until her mother is well enough to make the return journey.
Brother Neil, 56, from Suffolk Gardens, South Shields, says he feels ‘helpless’ as his mum endures a tortuous wait for treatment.
He said: “I feel helpless when my sister phones me up in a terrible state. I have been making calls to the insurance company but they don’t seem to care.
“I am worried that she will end up with an infection. My sister says the conditions are third world.
“I can’t sleep at night because of this.
“If the insurance company had said straightaway they wouldn’t fly mum home, she wouldn’t have had to go through this.
“The British Consulate in Rome have been fantastic and have told the insurance company she should be transported home.
“But they are not listening.”
A spokesman for Emergency Assistance Facilities, which deals with emergency medical claims on behalf of Just Travel customers, said: “Mrs Bradshaw has suffered a very distressing accident which has obviously made her family very worried about her overall health and well being.
“Our chief medical officer has spoken to the family and Mrs Bradshaw will have an operation on Thursday at a leading hospital in the region. We are a little surprised and confused as to why this claim has been brought to the attention of the press.
“The insurer has agreed to pay the claim and the family will be refunded in full once the claims process has been completed.”