McLaren Macomb patients complain of crowded wait rooms, rude staff

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Posted at 5:08 PM, Jan 17, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-17 18:14:03-05

MOUNT CLEMENS, Mich. (WXYZ) — A Macomb County woman is voicing concerns after she was treated at McLaren Macomb hospital over the weekend.

Shinika Smith says she went to the hospital just before 2 a.m. Sunday after having an allergic reaction.

"I was leaving a keno party at my sister-in-law's house and I was on my way home and I started feeling like an itchy rash. I got home and it spread everywhere," Smith said.

Smith says when she got to the hospital, she noticed several others in the emergency room who had already been waiting for hours to be seen. She says there also appeared an inadequate amount for patients.

"There was people laying in the back under blankets, over their heads. It was something I had never seen before," Smith said.

Smith says medical staff told her they would be getting her medication and discharging her but soon shifted courses and began an IV on her. She says she was at the hospital for 4.5 hours and sat with an empty IV in her hand for an extended amount of time.

Smith says when her daughter Diamond arrived hours later, people were still waiting to be seen. That's when she took cellphone video of patients in hospital gowns laying in chairs.

"I’m not just trying to single this place out. It was just at that moment, that’s what I was witnessing," Diamond Smith said.

Diamond Smith posted the video to her social media, voicing concerns of unsanitary conditions, unhelpful staff and overcrowding. The post has since been shared 635 times as of Tuesday afternoon, with some people echoing similar concerns.

"That was terrible because if it was somebody in my family, I would be upset. Why are you laying in a chair? You’re already here in pain," Diamond Smith said.

A spokesperson for Mclaren Macomb said they’re aware of the video and offered the following statement:

Local ER wait times routinely increase and decrease throughout the week and weekend, and they are further affected by the continuing nationwide health care staffing challenges and the pervasiveness of multiple seasonal illnesses causing many people to seek treatment in an ER.

McLaren Macomb is committed to its service to the community, providing patients with high-quality, efficient care no matter the circumstances, including occasions when care is initiated while waiting. 

Shinika Smith says she hopes future patients have a better experience than she did.

"Like I said, there was just like no compassion. It was no comfort and I get it, you’re at work, you may be overwhelmed because you have so many people and so forth but you still have know how to talk to people," Shinika Smith said.