A SICK woman was so horrified by the lack of cleanliness on her hospital ward she cleaned it herself.

Tereza Tosbell claims the Colchester General Hospital ward where she was admitted with an abscess on her neck was “filthy”.

During her stay, she saw only one brief visit by a cleaner, who failed to touch the ward’s dusty curtains, dirty bedframes and messy floor, she says Miss Tosbell, 48, from Stanway, grabbed some antibacterial fluid from a dispenser by her bed and handtowels from the bathroom and started cleaning the four-bed bay herself.

She said: “It was shameful to see how sloppy the cleaners were while I was there.

“I was not prepared to put up with such conditions. I reckon in total, I was cleaning for about an hour.

“I could hardly move my neck because of the abscess behind my left ear and my left hand was bruised from the cannula they inserted in my arm, but I had to do something.

“The nurses and other staff saw what I was doing, but just left me to get on with it.”

Miss Tosbell said her 22-year-old student son, Liam, came to see her on the first night of her stay, June 15.

She said: “The first thing he asked me was, ‘Have you seen how filthy the lift is?’ Then he complained about the room I was in.

“He’s a typical university student, so coming from him it must have been bad.”

Colchester Hospital University NHS Foundation Trust has invited Miss Tosbell to get in touch to explain what she had seen.

Hospital spokesman Mark Prentice said: “In the annual health check ratings for 2007/08, we scored maximum marks for safety and cleanliness and we have also been praised for our very low levels of infections such as clostridium difficile and MRSA.

“One of our senior matrons is dedicated two days a week looking at to ways of improving things for patients.

“We would ask Miss Tosbell to contact us so that we can look at her experience in more detail.”