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Heartache of family after former teacher Sally, 58, dies of Covid

todayJanuary 19, 2021 17

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A family is grieving after a woman from Marham died of Covid early in the New Year after three weeks at Lynn’s Queen Elizabeth Hospital.

Sally Bailey, 58, was an ex-primary school teacher and her death has left her family devastated.

Marham Primary school has raised £500 for a bench in Sally’s honour.

Ex-Primary teacher Sally Bailey, 58. Picture: SUBMITTED
Ex-Primary teacher Sally Bailey, 58. Picture: SUBMITTED

Dr April Brown, chief nurse at QEH, commented: “We apologise profusely for the shortcomings in our care.

“We have contacted the family to listen to their concerns and discuss the next steps, which will involve a full investigation of this case, after which we will share our learning.”

Sally’s sister Nicola Savage,50, spoke to the Lynn News about the family’s heartache.

Sally Bailey, 58 on the QEH Covid Ward FaceTimes her family. Picture: SUBMITTED
Sally Bailey, 58 on the QEH Covid Ward FaceTimes her family. Picture: SUBMITTED

She said:”Sally went in as an outpatient and never came out. She’s gone far too soon.

“I’m too angry to grieve. I want answers, what hurts is that my parents couldn’t even say goodbye to her.

“She was trying to pull her mask off as her phone was ringing and the staff didn’t even hold it to her ear. Her husband is in bits.

“After two and a half weeks in there she contracted Covid, even though she was in for another condition; once she had Covid they neglected everything else.”

Sally had a gastric band five years ago, that ‘went wrong’ according to Nicola, and was in need of weekly treatments.

She had a restrictive diet and suffered from low iron.

When she went for her regular appointment on December9, 2020 and doctors observed a ‘blockage in her bowel’ and wanted to keep her in for observation.

Nicola said: “Sally kept ringing us in tears, she was left in a terrible condition and was taken off morphine, her regular painkiller, she was crying in pain.

“Her buzzer was left on the floor and she needed the bathroom, she was allowed to mess herself, it was humiliating for her.

“After her Covid diagnosis she was put on the ward, all her other treatments were stopped and her dietary requirements completely ignored.”

Sally was reported to be ‘asymptomatic’ when on the ward and her family spoke to her on New Years’ Day over FaceTime.

“She seemed fine, “ said Nicola, “She said she hadn’t eaten properly, which of course affected her iron levels – she was perfect with her diet she knew what to eat to keep herself healthy, the lack of care on the Covid ward made her deteriorate faster.

“Her arms were black with bruising after several nurses attempted to take blood and failed.”

Sally’s daughter Natalie Bailey, 35, was called saying her mum had “taken a turn for the worse”.

She was allowed on the ward for an hour, but according to Nicola was told to ‘tell other family members to stop calling as she’s removing her mask to reach for the phone’ in Nicola’s eyes, this was Sally trying to say goodbye to her nearest and dearest.

Sally died alone after her daughter was told to leave the ward.

Sally’s last words to her other sister Rosie at 3pm were ‘I’ve had enough I love you.”

“She was loved by so many,” said Nicola,”It’s so sad because she was so cautious with the restrictions – for her to die of Covid feels unfair.”

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