The daughter of a man who spent nearly five days in the emergency room at the Health Sciences Centre in St. John's says she's shocked at what she's seeing.

Jennifer Scurlock said staff at the hospital were so overwhelmed, they neglected her father Donald Scurlock, 78, until he developed severe bedsores.

He was taken to hospital on Thursday, but there wasn't a room available for him. He stayed in the emergency section for days, bring treated with antibiotics for pneumonia.

Scurlock foot hospital injury

Donald Scurlock developed sores on his feet after his socks went unchanged for days while at the emergency room in Health Sciences Centre. (CBC)

When Scurlock visited him in hospital on Monday, she said he was hungry, thirsty, disoriented — and the socks she put on him when he was first admitted weren't changed.

She said the socks he wore for days were filled with pus, and her father was in severe pain.

"The heels of his feet were completely almost corroded. One appeared to be almost down to the bone," she said.

"There was pus everywhere, it appeared that his feet had been right on the blue plastic mattress because there was pus on that. He was very uncomfortable, so I asked to speak to the nurse in charge."

Scurlock said the head nurse was apologetic, but she doesn't blame the staff for what happened.

'If I had not known different I would think it was a war zone or a developing country, I would not think that this was Canada' - Jennifer Scurlock

"I feel that all the staff are, and were, doing the best that they could, but my sense is that they are being asked to do way too much, and for some reason there's not enough beds in that hospital to meet the need, and my father's a victim of that problem," she said.

According to Scurlock, there were people all over the emergency room lying on stretchers. She said she couldn't believe it.

"If I had not known different I would think it was a war zone or a developing country, I would not think that this was Canada."

She said she felt her father felt he was in a desperate situation, and needed her to say something for him.

Scurlock said her intention at first was not to approach the media, but the more time she spent thinking about what happened to her father, she couldn't help but wonder how many other people were in a similar situation.