A caller has slammed “awful” NHS emergency services for dismissing her 85-year-old mum, saying she waited “seven hours” for an ambulance to arrive and that the “system is broken”. The British Medical Association (BMA) and the Royal College of GPs (RCGP) have rung the alarm this week about patients getting stuck in a waiting line for hours before an ambulance could attend to them. The furious LBC called lamented the treatment she and her dying mother received, claiming on operator had said they could not rush an ambulance to the woman for being “constipated”.
Caller Louise from Buckhurst Hill said: “But last Thursday, she was in so much pain. She was 85.
“And when I dialled 999, I was told that it would be up to three hours.
“They phoned me about every hour apologising for the delay, meanwhile my mother, she was just going downhill.
“And after six hours of just sitting there, I rang and I complained and I said she was really deteriorating.”
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She went on: “And I when I listed all their symptoms, all her symptoms, one of the things that I was told was, ‘well, we can’t just take her in just because she’s constipated’, which I thought was an awful thing. Absolutely awful.
“They did say that they would raise the priority to a two, which is obviously only one down from literally somebody that stopped breathing.
“They arrived about an hour later so in total, I waited seven hours.
“She was in extreme pain, she hadn’t been eating properly in about two weeks.”
The caller continued: “When the paramedics came, they were delightful. I can’t, you know, I can’t criticise them at all.
“But they they said the delays were not due to COVID.
“They said it was people not being able to get appointments with their doctors, and they were using a&e and the ambulances instead.
“Anyway, they took her off to hospital when it was about 11:30 Last Thursday evening. And would you believe it?
“I got a call at 6am on Friday morning, ‘would you come and collect your mother?’. And I said ‘Are you are you joking’? You know, just ridiculous.”
She went on: “She’s far too ill? ‘No, any tests can be done as an outpatient’. And anyway, reluctantly, I went out in the freezing cold, took a wheelchair with me.
“And as I got to the hospital they said actually she’s just vomiting. We’ll keep her in.
“So she waited all day and all evening on a trolley remembering she’s an 85–year–old.
“Very sick, and finally moved her to another hospital and she died on Tuesday.”
“The system is broken. Individuals were so lovely. There was nothing wrong with individuals, but the system is broken.”
Louise reported her mother ultimately died a week after visiting the hospital.