Exclusive: Pregnant woman falls, waits hours at ER

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CAPE CORAL, Fla. – Amber Chapman is 17 weeks pregnant. Earlier this week she thought she had lost her precious unborn baby.

“I was in pain, I was crying,” she told WINK News Friday.

Chapman was walking to her Bokeelia home Wednesday evening when she tripped and fell in the road, landing hard on her stomach.

“It hurt bad, I knew something wasn’t right,” said Chapman.

An ambulance rushed her to the Cape Coral Hospital emergency room, where she waitedĀ and waited.

“I waited an hour, almost an hour, before I even got in the triage.”

She says it was another two hours before she was finally seen by a doctor. She says she was in pain and feared for her baby’s life the whole time.

“It was like really, really, really bad cramps, and I told them that. It kept hurting, it was like coming and going but it was like sharp, like somebody was stabbing me in my stomach. It was scary, I was really worried and I was upset.”

Chapman says it wasn’t until one in the morning, more than five hours after her arrival, before she was told her baby would be okay.

“Cape Coral Hospital is the hospital I was going to deliver at, but luckily I changed doctors and now I’m not going to Cape Coral, and I wouldn’t after that have a baby there… ’cause that’s unacceptable,” she said.

In an exclusive WINK News investigation that aired earlier this week, Ā Lee Memorial Health System said the average time patients spend in ERs is 2-3 hours, and most are seen by a doctor in 45 minutes.

When we brought this story to their attention, Lee Memorial spokesperson Mary Briggs sent WINK News this statement:

We are unable to comment on specific patient cases because of laws that protect private health information. What I can tell you is that every patient who arrives in our emergency departments is promptly triaged and treated as quickly as possible, with those with the most urgent, life-threatening cases being seen first. Ensuring the safety and well-being of our patients is the top priority of Lee Memorial Health System, and we are grateful for the outstanding care delivered every day and night by our emergency medical team.

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