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Body left on ward for seven hours


20 August, 2008  

An NHS board has confirmed a second case of a corpse being left on a Glasgow hospital ward – a week after news emerged of a similar incident at another hospital in the city.

The body was left on the ward at Glasgow Royal Infirmary for seven hours to allow grieving family to gather and pay their last respects, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde said.

Last week hospital bosses apologised for a delay in the transfer of a corpse to the mortuary after the body was left alongside patients at Stobhill Hospital for more than seven hours.

However, in the latest case at Glasgow Royal Infirmary, they said they had acted in the “best interests” the patient’s family, who died suddenly at the hospital on 12 August.

NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde said in a statement: “It was the wishes of the grieving family that the body remain on the ward so that family members could gather to pay their last respects and also await a blessing by a priest.”

The board said the priest could only get to the hospital four hours after he was told of the patient’s death. It added that visiting time had already begun when the family left the hospital and it would have been “inappropriate and distressing” for other patients if the body had been moved at that time.”

Copyright PA Business 2008

NHS Glasgow and Clyde