A distressed mum claims she was left fitting on the floor of a hospital because staff refused to give her a bed.
Jodie Lee, who suffers from various medical conditions including non-epileptic attack disorder and functional neurological disorder (FND), has shared photos of herself lying on the floor of the Royal Liverpool Hospital after being admitted to the emergency department on Friday night.
The 36-year-old claims she was repeatedly told by staff that she could not have a bed because she was "medically fit" and her issues were "stress and mental health related".
The mum-of one shared her story with the Liverpool Echo in a bid to highlight how patients with complex health needs can fall through the cracks.
Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust which runs the hospital said that staff were making arrangements to make her more comfortable while she waited for an assessment for her health needs from another specialist team.
Jodie, from Anfield, claims that one of the seizures she suffered while waiting for an assessment at the hospital caused her to fall to the ground and hit her head.
She says she was left convulsing on the floor for more than an hour while her worried family tried to get her a bed.
After arriving at the hospital in an ambulance three hours earlier, the family left the hospital at around 9pm.
They then received a call from the hospital at around 10.30pm asking where they were.
Jodie said her experience at the Royal was "traumatic" and hit out at the hospital for not giving her a bed.
She told the ECHO : “When I arrived they took me straight through to a quiet room because I was making a lot of noise because I suffer from Tourette's when I'm in one of my seizures.
"I was hitting myself as part of my seizure. It's completely involuntary.
“They left me with no bed knowing full well that I have seizures and I should have been placed on a bed like everyone else deserves a bed in the Royal.
"I think because I had been seen by the crisis mental health team I wasn't technically under A&E and they said I didn't require a bed.
“But then I stood up and had another seizure that caused me to hit my head on the floor. After I had the next seizure and hit my head on the floor I needed a bed.
"After I fell and hit my head, the nurses came over and took my blood pressure and heart rate and then they just walked out again.
“I was having seizures on the floor with just my pyjamas on. I was freezing. I had the blanket that they gave me as a pillow to put under my head in case I had another seizure and they still wouldn’t give me a bed.
"You always think going to hospital is the safest place for you but I feel like I should have stayed at home. But instead I've gone through that awful traumatic ordeal.
"I feel absolutely disgusted. Everyone who enters the hospital should be entitled to a bed if they need it. If you're in hospital it's meant to be a safe environment, you're meant to be safe. Being on the floor of the Royal and having seizures is not safe at all."
Jodie's brother, Josh Lee, 29, who was with her at the hospital said: "The picture of her laying on the floor says it all.
"She didn't get the care that she needed. She was deemed medically fit and had to just lay on the floor. It's was wrong on so many levels.
"I felt that there was no duty of care towards her at all that night."
Josh said the family ended up leaving the hospital before Jodie was discharged and they could see "at least three empty beds" on their way out.
"Nobody asked where we were going," he added.
Jodie says that since she was diagnosed with FND two and a half years ago, her quality of life has deteriorated and that the seizures are "ruining" her life.
She said: “I’ve been going through hell for the last two and a half years. My son’s had to deal with it and he’s only nine. He’s grown up as a young carer. It’s not fair on him.
“It’s taking my life away. I can’t even be left alone.
"My mum went to the shops the other day and she came back and I was absolutely torturing myself. There’s no light at the end of the tunnel.
"I’ve been told I have to wait for two years to see a consultant about my condition and it’s just horrible. This is going to be my life for two years. How am I meant to cope?"
The Royal Liverpool Hospital has said Jodie was "cared for appropriately" by medical staff at the hospital.
In a statement, Dr Tristan Cope, medical director at the hospital said: "The priority of our staff is to always provide the best care possible for patients and our team in A&E treat patients' emergency medical needs.
"Whilst Ms Lee and family members were in the department, Ms Lee was cared for appropriately by our team.
"Staff were making arrangements to make her more comfortable whilst she waited for an assessment for her health needs from another specialist team.
"However Ms Lee and her family left the department before either of these could be facilitated.
"We would like the opportunity to discuss the experience that Ms Lee described with her and encourage her to contact our Patient Advice and Complaints Team so that we can look into this in the most appropriate way."