Mother's concern as daughter waits 18 hours to be treated in emergency department

A mother has spoken to UTV about her deep concern after her sick daughter had a 15-hour wait to be treated in The Royal Victoria Hospital.

During her stay in the ED, the mother said she encountered dried blood on the floor and chairs and another patient spitting onto the ground.

The woman spoke to UTV from the emergency department on Wednesday afternoon where her daughter, who has learning difficulties and epilepsy, has been ill with renal sepsis.

In a statement the Belfast trust said it was 'very sorry' that patients are experiencing situations like the mother and daughter's, and that all of its emergency departments continue to face extraordinary pressures.

The mother told UTV that her and her daughter had been moved around different chairs, often into crowded circumstances.

"She had to sit in a cubicle with four other people" she said "two males, both of whom had alcohol on board, one of whom had self-harmed.

"Also, an 87-year-old gentleman who was blind and who, at one stage, couldn't even make his own way to find a toilet."

The woman said the staff who were working have "absolutely worked their heart out" during a "dire" situation overnight.

"These are the people who are holding everything up" she added "but there's not enough of them."

The Belfast Health Trust told UTV "Staff work every day under the most challenging pressures while doing their very best for their patients."

"Many patients are waiting far too long and we are very sorry this is their experience in ED."

Hospitals across Northern Ireland have been experiencing severe pressures in recent months.

Budget cuts announced in recent weeks are anticipated to further impact services.

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