A GRIEVING husband has criticised staffing levels at Hereford County Hospital after his wife died following a wasp sting.

Madeline Ann Hammond, 73, died earlier this year after being stung at her home in Tenbury Wells.

Yesterday's inquest, held at Hereford Town Hall, heard that on August 22 of last year, Mrs Hammond had been sitting in her lounge with her husband, Geoffrey, when she was stung.

Mr Hammond told the inquest that although a red mark was evident at the site of the sting, his wife had initially seemed fine, but collapsed 10 minutes later.

An ambulance was called but, Mr Hammond said, did not arrive until 40 minutes after the call was made.

Mrs Hammond was taken to Hereford County Hospital, where she was admitted to ITU having suffered a cardiac arrest.

She was transferred to Frome ward five days later, where she continued to receive treatment for aspiration pneumonia and a hypoxic brain injury resulting from anaphylactic shock.

While in hospital, she developed C.Difficile, pressure ulcers and hospital acquired pneumonia, and her condition continued to deteriorate.

It was agreed that further treatment would be futile, and Mrs Hammond died on January 12.

"I am not very happy with the hospital, as she was moved from one ward to another," Mr Hammond said.

"One one occasion, she was moved to the stroke ward, but the ward sister refused to have her there, saying she did not have a bed for her, and Madeline was left in the corridor for over 30 minutes before being taken back to her previous ward.

"We had hoped that Madeline could be moved to a hospital specialising in brain injury treatment, but eventually we agreed to end of life care as we were told there was no hope for Madeline.

"I would visit her daily and was very upset at the care she received.

"There did not seem to be enough staff on the ward to care for all the patients."

Assistant coroner for Herefordshire, Roland Wooderson, concluded that Mrs Hammond had died as a result of pneumonia, hypoxic brain injury and anaphylactic shock and recorded a verdict of accidental death.