After waiting 24 hours on a stretcher, a 98-year-old resistance fighter denounces the state of hospitals

After waiting 24 hours on a stretcher a 98 year old resistance

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    in collaboration with

    Dr Gérald Kierzek (Medical Director of Doctissimo)

    Medical validation:
    September 22, 2022

    French resistance fighter and historian Madeleine Riffaud, recently admitted to Lariboisière hospital for a long Covid, says she waited nearly 24 hours on a stretcher. She now denounces “the lamentable state of the health sector”.

    This is an unfortunately common occurrence. Madeleine Riffaud lived, like so many others, the “reality” of emergency services in France. And a deplorable care – lack of means and personnel. On Sunday September 4, she was left on a stretcher for 24 hours, without food.

    Twenty-four hours on the same stretcher, without eating anything

    It was at the beginning of September that Madeleine Riffaud, 98-year-old poet, journalist and historian, experienced a real “nightmare” at the Lariboisière Hospital.

    Shortly after his arrival in the emergency room – “for an important examination due to a long Covid” – the nonagenarian, who suffers from blindness, is not taken care of and installed among the sick.

    “I sometimes felt that my stretcher was being taken away, that I was crossing a courtyard, perhaps? It was colder, that’s all I can say. And then they left me there, without any business, without means of communication with my loved ones”she is indignant in an open letter to the AP-HP, published in the magazine “Commune”.

    After twelve hours of waiting, a glass of lukewarm water will be brought to him. But no food.

    Not having a bed available for her, the hospital ends up sending her the next afternoon to a private clinic, without even telling her relatives.

    “I was the third wandering soul that this clinic received that day”laments the nonagenarian.

    “My fate is that of millions of Parisians and French people”

    Revolted following her experience, this former nurse points out that in hospitals (former or current). “The problems are always the same: lack of qualified personnel, lack of credit, the gap is widening between the technique of advanced medicine and the means made available to it. “.

    For her, those responsible for this dramatic episode are not the caregivers, but the State, which has them “all abandoned, caregivers as well as patients”.

    Moreover, she specifies that she is only one case among many others:

    “My misadventure is a daily story in the hospital in France. My fate is that of millions of Parisians and French”.

    For Dr. Kierzek, these incidents in the emergency room “result from the saturation of the downstream beds. Professionals are doing what they can, but hospitals lack endorsements. We must therefore return to a model of proximity and humanity, both for patients and for professionals.he specifies, before adding “that due to the aging of the population, the attendance of emergencies risks, as a bonus, to increase sharply”.


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