Hospital campaigner bedridden
Bianca Clare | 30th July 2011 Source: Sunshine Coast Daily, Queensland, Australia
An investigation by the Daily found the 71-year-old’s urgent category one referral paperwork never reached the hospital.
But now it has, the retired nurse should have her life back on track within a month.
Ms Aspinall was in desperate need of surgery on both her hips.
She had spent three weeks bedridden and three months struggling to walk.
With 100 people joining her on the category two waiting list, she had feared increased demand for orthopaedic services “would mean she could die waiting”.
Ms Aspinall was instrumental in getting the Borbidge Government to green light Noosa Hospital in the 1990s after a decade-long fight.
She also fought hard to have quality, affordable housing for Noosa’s elderly and disabled citizens.
In 2009 her campaigning had to take a backseat after she fell, fracturing her left hip. A year after undergoing a hemiarthroplasty, her left hip popped out.
The hip returned by itself but she could not wait for more than two minutes on the spot.
Ms Aspinall said in February this year her specialist told her she urgently needed a revision hip replacement surgery.
“I had an appointment in March and April where I was told I had been placed on waiting list as a category two,” she said.
“That should have meant treatment within 90 days.”
Ms Aspinall said her condition went downhill fast on July 4 when as a result of the wait her right hip degraded.
“I had an appointment with my private specialist who sent a urgent request for category one but never heard back,” she said.
“I was bedridden. The most I could hover for was 10 seconds.”
The Daily understands that a photocopy of the original referral went to Nambour hospital instead of the updated referral.
Ms Aspinall said she felt for others who might be waiting longer than necessary for surgery.
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