Health and safety madness at health centre

Passers-by had to aid and call an ambulance for the octogenarian when she tumbled face first on her way to an appointment at the Blackmore Drive practice.

The elderly woman, who has been registered at the health centre since 1968, suffered a broken nose, black eyes, cuts and bruises - and was bleeding ‘profusely’.

“People think falling in front of a health centre is the best place to do it, but clearly it’s not,” said her daughter, Jackie Martin.

“I think it’s absolutely appalling.”

Health centre bosses this week offered their sincere wishes that the woman makes a full recovery and emphasised their commitment to the wellbeing of the community.

The fall victim, who does not want to be named, had just been dropped off by her daughter-in-law for an appointment when the accident happened on August 31.

Mrs Martin was told by her mother that some members of staff said their hands were tied by insurance, others by health and safety.

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She thanked passers-by who came to her mum’s side, including people from inside the waiting room.

Mrs Martin added: “Loads of people stopped to help, apart from those who are paid to. They even had to call the paramedic.”

The family has lodged a complaint with the NHS.

Nigel Meadows, practice manager, said: “The health and safety of our community is of utmost importance to us.

“This particular lady was cared for by the emergency services due to the nature of her injuries and she was then conveyed by ambulance to a nearby hospital where she was treated in accident and emergency.

“We sincerely hope that the lady makes a full recovery. The practice constantly reviews its processes to ensure that our care is of the highest possible standard.”

A spokesman for NHS Devon’s Patient Advice and Complaints Team said they were in touch with the family and keeping them updated as necessary.

? What do readers think? Do you have any examples of where health and safety rules have caused a problem? Email