By EARYEL BOWLEG
Tribune Staff Reporter
SHENIQUE Miller, host of Beyond The Headlines, has criticised the care her sister received at Princess Margaret Hospital, alleging “negligence” was to blame for Swanson Miller’s death.
In a post on her Facebook on Wednesday the host claimed that her sister is “no longer because of poor care, negligence and the lackluster manner in which health-care is administered at the Princess Margaret Hospital”.
This newspaper contacted the Public Hospitals Authority where an official said a statement was to come. However, no statement was released up to press time.
Contacted yesterday, the heartbroken host chronicled her sister’s deteriorating health, telling The Tribune of a phone call from Swanson alerting her to a health issue. It was the begging to a devastating end.
Her sister weighed her healthcare options and ultimately decided to seek treatment at PMH.
“Three weeks ago, after I got done with the show, I would normally call them or call my mother, her and two of my sisters, including the one who passed away, they lived together. So, I would call my mother just to say hi and get her feedback,” she recalled.
“My two sisters ended up speaking with me and she asked me - she said her blood count was very low and the doctor told her she has to go to the hospital for a transfusion. She asked me ‘What could I do? Should I go to PMH or should I go to Doctor’s?’ And I said to her, ‘Listen, I know that you were recently back to work and maybe you’re obviously trying to get back on your feet because she was furloughed for more than a year and a half from Atlantis’.
“She had recently returned to work, and so obviously as someone with a child in college and having depleted savings and all that. You know, you’re trying to hold on to every little cent now to rebuild and to ensure that you have something for your son. But I told her I said on an ordinary day, PMH, has challenges. Now given COVID, it’s a mess. My advice to you is if you can and if you have any funds that is put aside somewhere, anywhere go to Doctor’s. Meet your deductible, etc, but her focus was you know, Shenique, the deductible is just so much.”
Swanson went to PMH and was eventually admitted, according to Shenique, who told The Tribune that several blood transfusions were administered.
The media veteran explained that her sister was plagued by a “common female aliment” that she was trying to get addressed. It caused her blood count to also suffer.
After being hospitalised for a little over a week she was discharged and also given a date to be seen at one of the outpatient clinics.
“This is someone who, at the time, a number of tests were performed on her during that time and CAT and CT scans - just a number of various tests that they can see that the female issue needed to be addressed based on the size of everything,” Ms Miller explained. Later, she noted they wanted to giver her sister an injection.
Despite this, the host said another revelation concerning her sister’s health was revealed.
“My mother said to me that she’s coming up with a shortness of breath. I’m like a shortness of breath, what happened now? I thought everything was okay and she was getting sorted out with getting the surgery done and getting the surgery scheduled and that the doctors were working on that and she said ‘no they’re not doing it’.”
“I said rule out COVID. But it wasn’t.”
Shenique said this shortness of breath continued up to Sunday.
“She sat unattended. Not much as a cup of water to drink until Monday morning when she was administered drips because at the time she was again gasping for air – having difficulty breathing,” Ms Miller claimed.
However, a family friend who works at PMH reportedly went to the accident and emergency area to take her a cup of water and a cup of tea.
Shenique said of her sister’s condition: “Weak, no energy, and ‘very tired’ were some of the symptoms Swanson experienced.”
It is claimed that Swanson complained that a nurse rushed to have her discharged. It was then that Shenique said she reached out to a senior official for help.
“I sent him her number. As far as I know he called her. I don’t know if he ever followed up further than that in terms of speaking with doctors or staff in the area,” she said.
Despite continued ailing health, Swanson was discharged Monday evening.
“When my sister went to pick her up… she was again sitting there breathless, tired - had to be taken out in a wheelchair. Had to be wheeled to my sister’s vehicle because she had no strength to walk.
“Getting out of the vehicle just to walk a short distance to the house, she had to stop, take breaths and and just very laborious.”
On Tuesday, the breathing issue continued.
The ambulance was called and Ms Miller’s father awakened her that something was not right with her sibling.
“Based on my mother’s response they walked back out and mummy said ‘Well what happened they’re not taking her. Why they ain’t telling her’. I said mummy they are gonna take her. They’ll take her and I don’t know if it was the emergency medical technicians or my sister and brother. But someone informed my mother and said, it in just these same words - she passed.”
The ordeal has left the family searching for answers.
The family awaits the results of an autopsy for better insight into what led to Swanson’s death. It is a blow the family never imagined, especially with the holiday season approaching.