THE family of a patient at Kuala Lumpur Hospital has complained that the hospital rejected its request to transfer her to the first-class ward.
The family claimed that the rejection was because the first-class rooms had been allocated for Sea Games athletes.
The family of Elenchelvi Kalaivanan, 60, who was warded for swollen legs on Friday, had asked the hospital to transfer her from the third-class ward.
Her brother, James, said his sister was placed under medical observation for possible chronic illness at the third-class ward.
He said the family wanted to transfer her to the first-class ward as she was eligible.
However, he claimed that nurses and doctors refused to sign the transfer letter purportedly on grounds that the first-class rooms had been reserved for Sea Games athletes.
“This is disheartening. We were disappointed when the doctors and nurses informed us that the rooms were reserved for athletes.
“We wanted for her to change rooms as it would be easier for her to go to the toilet because of her swollen legs.”
He said she had been working at the hospital as an assistant
at the operation theatre for years.
“I am sad that she is treated this way. Why should patients be treated this way? This is a government hospital. Citizens should be given priority.”
James said Elenchelvi was discharged on Sunday night.
A hospital spokesman said no rooms had been reserved for Sea Games athletes as the first-class ward was full.
She said the application to move patients to the first-class ward depended on the doctor’s decision and room availability.
“We have not admitted Sea Games athletes.
“There is only out-patient treatment for them.
“The hospital often receives requests from family members to transfer patients to first-class rooms.
“However, the transfer is allowed only if we receive approval from doctors and that patients are in a stable condition.
“The main reason patients are admitted to the third-class ward is based on their medical condition.
“Patients who are in critical condition need close monitoring by doctors and nurses and this is done at the third-class ward.
“Patients are moved to the first-class ward only when doctors have diagnosed their condition to be stable.”
She said if patients were under observation, it would be difficult for transfers to be made.