Heartbreaking case of the woman no one has missed
An elderly woman who was tragically abandoned outside a southeast Queensland hospital has still not been identified nearly one month on from the startling incident that's left a small Sunshine Coast community bamboozled.
Despite the best efforts of police and media, the unnamed elderly woman who was left on a bench seat outside the Nambour Hospital on September 6, has gone unrecognised for over three weeks.
A man, who has since been cleared by police of any wrong doing, told officers he had found the woman - believed to be aged in her mid to late 80s - more than 20km away on Brandenburg Rd at Mooloolah, before he left her at the hospital.
"Everybody's in the dark about who she is and where she lives, so she's a Jane Doe in that regard," said Council on the Ageing (COTA) Queensland's Chief Executive, Mark Tucker-Evans.
"It's quite amazing that no one has stepped forward in almost a month, or in fact that no body, unless she's a visitor to the coast, that none of her neighbours have stepped forward either."
Due to the woman's medical condition, she has been unable to verbally consent to a DNA test or tell hospital staff who she is.
Mr Tucker-Evans said the intriguing case of the mystery woman highlighted some of the challenges older people face.
"Particularly if living alone, some of our older people are not connected to their community and can go missing or unfortunately pass away, while nobody is there to notice that they're missing or gone. Communities need to look out for our elderly."
Despite posters spread throughout the surrounding towns near where the woman was found, no one has recognised or remembers seeing the elderly lady in the area.
Nearly one month on, the woman remains in hospital, having recently been transferred to the Sunshine Coast University Hospital.
Mr Tucker-Evans said pending the woman's mental ability and medical status, the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) in some instances may be able to step in.
However, an OPG spokesperson said the Office had not yet become involved.
"Whilst OPG is continually monitoring the situation and are in consultation with relevant stakeholders, we are currently not formally involved as we have not been formally appointed by Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT) to make any decisions."
Originally published as Heartbreaking case of the woman no one has missed