A woman claims she was assaulted by another patient who 'ran his hands up her legs' while she sat on the floor waiting to be seen at Swindon's Great Western Hospital.

And she says after the incident happened, staff suggested she wait there all weekend for a scan to become available.

The woman, who does not wish to be named, contacted the Adver after the incident, which she says happened around midday on Thursday, June 20 at Great Western Hospital, while she was waiting to be assessed for a suspected stroke. 

She said: “I think it was another patient, his voice was very loudly announcing he was coming over to see if he could ‘help me’. I was sat on the floor as A&E was so busy and my seat had been taken. The man sat on my feet making it impossible for me to move and made him ridiculously close.

“I could smell his breath which was full of alcohol, telling the whole waiting room he was ‘helping’, but what they couldn’t see was him running his hands up my legs and thighs whilst telling me I don’t need to be scared, nothing bad is going to happen to me. I could see the performance left people in the waiting room confused.

“I am so grateful for the one person in the waiting room who sprung up, grabbed a member of staff and saved me.

“I got there maybe about 10:30, saw triage about 11:30 and was assaulted about lunchtime.  After seeing the stroke team, I was told they needed to admit me for an urgent MRI, but they had no beds.

“I could wait in the waiting room until Monday, which was the earliest an MRI would become available, after just being assaulted.  Or I could go home and have an MRI on outpatients and I told her she wasn’t really presenting me with a choice.”

She said she does not plan on reporting the incident to the police as she doubts there will be enough evidence to convict the man and believes the process would just be a 'headache'. 

Instead, she wanted to highlight her gratitude towards the person who stopped the situation, as well as draw attention to patients sitting on the floor waiting to be seen in A&E. 

A spokesperson for Great Western Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust said: “We are sorry and shocked to hear about this patient’s experience and encourage them to contact our Patient Advise and Liaison team so that we can find out more and offer support where we can.

“This behaviour is not tolerated in our hospital, and our clinical teams work closely with our 24/7 on-site security team and Wiltshire police to address any concerns raised.

“When the emergency department is very busy patients are sometimes asked to wait for tests, scans and other assessments in a separate area which has comfortable seating and a dedicated nursing team.

“If any patient ever has any concerns, they should never hesitate to ask to speak to the nurse in charge at the time.”