A woman has spoken of her anguish after her mum died alone in hospital because nurses were unable to call her while the Optus network was down.
Rachel, from Mona Vale on Sydney’s northern beaches, brought her mum, Joy, to the hospital, which is just 10 minutes away, and was assured someone would call her if her mother took a turn for the worse.
Unfortunately, Joy’s health did decline, but the hospital could not contact Rachel because she is with Optus and the network had crashed.
‘I had (the phone) next to me, just in case something happened, so I could get that call and I would be there in 10 minutes to have those last moments with her,’ she told 2GB’s Chris O’Keefe.
The tragic human cost of the Optus network outage was laid bare when it caused a Sydney woman to be denied being with her mum in her final moments
‘It was only when my daughter Facetimed me and said “Mum. the network’s down” that I thought I should call the hospital and find out if anything has happened.’
When she got through, she found out that her mum had died. Heartbreakingly, the hospital said: ‘We tried to call you.’
‘I just think this is so sad, when you rely so much on your phone, and they’ve let us down, we cannot ever get that time back with our mum,’ Rachel said.
‘This is absolutely disgraceful, the way that we didn’t know that mum had passed away because no one could call us.’
The outage continued to cause trouble for the grieving family as they couldn’t contact other family members to let them know that Joy had died.
‘Optus have really let us down,’ Rachel said. ‘What sort of compensation can you get? We can never get those last moments back.
‘When you’re going through something so traumatic the last thing you need is to have someone you trust (let you down).
Rachel, from Mona Vale on Sydney’s northern beaches brought her mum, Joy to the local hospital, which is just 10 minutes away, and was assured they would call her if her mother took a turn for the worse. But the call never came because she has an Optus phone
‘Your phone is your life (in this type of situation). Your mum needs you, I need them (to make sure) I can get a phone call about something this precious to me, and I didn’t.
‘They don’t care, there’s no compensation. I’m not a business, I’m not anything to them.
‘But I’ve been let down by them so much,’ Rachel said.