Shane Grant was an outpatient of Bundaberg hospital who was told he wasn’t entitled to a lift home at 2am.
Shane Grant was an outpatient of Bundaberg hospital who was told he wasn’t entitled to a lift home at 2am. ROB BARICH

Forced to walk after treatment

A BUNDABERG man claims he was forced to walk about 4km home from Bundaberg Hospital at 2am after receiving migraine treatment early last Friday.

After his treatment, Shane Grant said he was told by his doctor he would be provided with a taxi voucher, which he would have to pay back at a later date.

However, confusion after a nursing shift change left Mr Grant without transport home.

“I ended up having to walk home because I was told that I didn’t apply for taxi vouchers,” he said.

The walk took Mr Grant about an hour.

Mr Grant, who lives in Ruddell Street, said he was willing to pay the hospital back for their costs when he was paid the following week.

“If you’ve ever had a migraine, they really knock you around,” he said.

Mr Grant said he was taken to the hospital via ambulance and was unable to call his parents to pick him up.

Sunshine Coast-Wide Bay Health Service District northern cluster manager Beth Norton said patients who used a taxi transport voucher must sign a form to say they will repay the cost of the taxi once invoiced by the hospital.

“In this particular case, a check with clinical staff on duty indicated the patient was offered the use of a taxi voucher but refused to sign the Queensland Health document saying he would reimburse the Wide Bay Health Service for the cost of the fare,” she said.

However, Mr Grant said he had never been given anything to sign.

“I was pushed out the door by a nurse,” he said.

Ms Norton said the policy had been in place since February 2007.

“Depending on the patient’s personal circumstances, the assistance may range from making telephone calls to providing a safe place to wait such as a quiet waiting area. The hospital provides assistance with a taxi voucher if there is no friend or relative who can be called for help,” she said.

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