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Wednesday, 14 September 2016
Man who was 'guaranteed' he was not having a heart attack by an ambulance crew died at home just hours later. Cap
A MAN died from a heart attack just hours after private ambulance staff gave him a “guarantee” that he was not suffering a medical emergency.
Gary Page, 54, of Regent Court, Laindon, dialled the NHS 111 number on February 24 when he developed chest pains.
An inquest into his death at Chelmsford Coroner’s Court today heard how the East of England Ambulance Service sent a privately contracted crew to the scene at about 5.30pm.
After spending an hour at his home, the crew from the Private Ambulance Service company left, having told him to take Gaveston and paracetamol.
A second ambulance was sent at about 6.30am the following day after a 999 call, but Mr Page had died from a heart attack.
The court heard from DCI Marina Eriksen of Essex Police, who said a criminal negligence investigation had closed without charges.
Ambulance care assistants David Norman and Daniel Rudge then told the court ambulance technician Lauren De La Haye immediately dismissed Mr Page’s concerns on the night in question.
Mr Norman said she told Mr Page: “I guarantee you are not having a heart attack.”
Mr Rudge said Miss De La Haye had been “very, very, abrupt”, even though he had carried out two ECG tests and raised concerns about “abnormalities”.
Miss De La Haye, who no longer works for the company, did not attend the hearing due to health reasons but a statement was read out in which she said Mr Page had repeatedly asked not to be taken to hospital.
But Mr Page’s wife, Kim, said Miss De La Haye had “dissuaded” her husband from going to hospital.
She said: “She told him: ‘You are definitely not having a heart attack’. The way it was put to him was if you want to go to hospital we can take you but you will have a ten hour wait. She said it three times.
“That’s why he assumed there was nothing seriously wrong with him and there was no need for him to go to hospital.
“He thought it was his heart and he definitely would have gone.”
Senior coroner Caroline Beasley-Murray said she “fully accepted” Mrs Page’s version of events.
She said: “Ambulance personnel visited his home and he was not transferred to hospital.
“He was advised that he was not suffering a heart attack. Early in the morning he was found unresponsive and his death was confirmed.
“There were serious failings in the medical care provided to the deceased on the evening of February 24.”
An East of England Ambulance Service spokesman said: “We offer our condolences to Mr Page’s family on their loss, and offer a formal apology for not providing the patient with the care which was expected.
“In our investigation with Private Ambulance Service of the circumstances surrounding his death, it was identified that the seriousness of Mr Page’s condition was not recognised and further advice not sought.”
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