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WARD 7 IS A NIGHTMARE: He fought stray cats and lost 4 of his toes during hospitalization

68-Year-Old Herbert Thomas who survived the cat attacks and poor delivery of health care at New Amsterdam Hospital

A 68 year-old  old West Berbice man is upset with what he says is poor treatment in the Diabetic Ward at the New Amsterdam Public Hospital.

This poor management has left him with a horror story, he is now sharing with all.

Hubert Thomas called “Lion” was warded at the Diabetic Ward at New Amsterdam Hospital for two periods between last year and this year. It was during hospitalization that he lost four toes.

Thomas feels that he would have been able to save three of those toes if he had received the right treatment complemented by better conditions during his stay at the public health facility.

“The conditions under which they operated on my toes were horrific. They just cut them off  right there in the open ward, no privacy no anaesthetic… just so “raw wrenk” right there while I lying on the bed,” Thomas recalled.

Thomas told us that “surgery” was so vivid to others that another patient hastily exited the ward after witnessing what took place.

The man said that act was just the beginning of his horrors. “The bathroom there is a tiled bathroom. There are no hand rails you could hold on to.

Not a mat to stand on, not a towel rack to hang a towel on just a plain tiled bathroom,” Thomas said, “People with foot problems have issues with balancing themselves. They need this type of support in a bathroom. There was none.”

Thomas slipped in the bathroom,  broke a toe and that toe has to be removed. Thomas said he expected the very basic of care and supplies but not even bandages were available. The Hospital staff said they had none, according to him.

“ For the duration of my stay my wife had to buy all the bandages necessary sometimes daily. Where are we going? The more things change the more they remain the same?”

Then there were the actual conditions in the ward itself.

“A dirty ward,” Thomas recalled, “Some of the windows had cobwebs.  There was an old  fan in the ward itself. This fan kept shedding flakes metal parts while working and the best option was not to put it on. I had to endure the heat.”

And then there were the stray cats that would invade the ward nightly. “They would jump through the windows, crawl through the doors, climb on the beds, mess up the ward and be a genuine nuisance,” the man said.

Being a long standing patient he had to find a way to deal with them. Thomas said he asked patients who were being discharged for their discarded water bottles.

Then he would fill the bottles with water and bide his time waiting for the invasion. When the cats appeared he would, “murder their rass with pelt,” Thomas said humorously.

“Them cats roaming Ward 7 must be glad I out of there,” he said adding though that such nonsense should not be allowed to happen in a modern health care facility.

There were stray dogs too, but they remained outside the facility and Thomas recalls hearing the dogs scavenging in the yard at nights.

“The government spending millions of dollars on health facilities, where is the improvement at the New Amsterdam Hospital?” Thomas asked.

When Thomas was eventually discharged in January, he described it as happening “under some strange circumstances.”

“One day the Ward was empty. Was just me alone. The same night one whole set of people with all sorts of diabetic foot conditions,  get admit,  fulling up the ward. The next morning the doctor came, he looked at me and then told me I must go home. He said he could not  keep me longer because I could be exposed to COVID 19 from the new arrivals and that would not be fair.” Thomas recalled.

As he recalled pleasant memories of his stay, Thomas noted that the nurses were caring and professional but said that the doctors were less professional as they carried out their duties.

“They didn’t communicate with me. I keep asking them Doc what’s happening but they would brush me off with a short comment about monitoring my blood or not even answer at all.”

Thomas says he has been receiving treatment for his feet at a private institution since.

“The other day a nurse there put something on my foot. I didn’t realize what he was doing but when he started cutting off the waste matter. I didn’t feel a thing and then I realized that what he had put on my foot was an anaesthetic to numb the feeling,” Thomas said

“At Ward Seven New Amsterdam Hospital I would have been hollering in pain so loud as to waken dead people,” the man said, ” “If I did know before and gone there before I might have still get to keep  at least three of my toes.”

“I went through that and my main reason for talking to this News Website about Villages is to let people know what is happening there at Ward 7 at the New Amsterdam Hospital. Also to let the Government know that there is an urgent need for an upgrade of the facilities at that Ward so that the place is more patient friendly and less of a nightmare for ill people who are already depressed by painful diabetic feet conditions,” Thomas said.