Barking mad decision
The East Of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust has been plagued with performance and financial difficulties over recent years but the men and women who provide their frontline service have done the region proud.
On the, thankfully, few occasions I have come into direct contact with them I have been impressed with their professionalism and caring.
Sadly, 86-year-old great grandmother Brenda Wild- ing from nearby Littleport in Cambridgeshire has had a very different experience.
Cancer sufferer Brenda was taken to Addenbrooke’s by ambulance after a 999 call. Her condition was not life threatening but she was in pain and vomiting.
On route the ambulance stopped so the paramedics could help a ‘cold and wet’ stray dog.
Yes, that’s right a cold and wet dog!
In the end they gave the dog – a black Labrador – a lift in the ambulance. The dog was hyper and had to be held back from Mrs Wilding as she vomited.
Her family are quite rightly furious at what happened.
A trust spokesman apologised to Brenda and her family but no one has made direct contact with her.
And what of the paramedics?
They, the spokesman revealed, “now understand that their actions were against trust guidelines and now understand there is no legal responsibility to stop for a domestic dog, even if it was in danger.’’
So not so much an apology, more a shoulder shrug.
But on the plus side I am relieved that the trust has confirmed that it’s not in their guidelines that sick people should have to share their ambulance with a slobbering Labrador!
What were those paramedics thinking?
They probably thought they were being caring, but they weren’t they were being stupid and they badly let down a vulnerable person.