SAULT STE. MARIE, ONT. - A Sault Ste. Marie woman is outraged after she witnessed a man masturbating in the bed across from her in a mixed-gender hospital ward last month while she was recovering from a heart attack.
The man in the bed across from her masturbated and the man in the bed beside her gave her "the eye."
Still, Karen Lowe, 61, was more upset by the laissez-faire attitude of hospital employees.
“I asked the nurse, ‘I don’t want to see his privates. Can you cover him up?’ The nurses were laughing. They thought it was hilarious,” she said.
Sault Area Hospital ended a long-standing practice to segregate patients by gender about four years ago, drafting over-capacity protocols to allow men and women to share rooms if the situation demanded it.
The hospital admits the set-up is not ideal, but says it's a necessity when patient capacity is exceeded.
The hospital's mixed-gender rooms have drawn criticism before. In March, a 65-year-old woman said a male patient touched her and nursing staff failed to act.