Mother Found Dead After Ambulance Turns Back – Help Arrives 10 Hours Late
Tragic story by John Chapman in the Daily Express of how a distraught son has told how he found his mother dead on her living room floor nearly 10 hours after an ambulance was sent to her home.
Ann Walters, who had a hole in her heart, dialled the NHS 111 line seeking medical help and her case was categorised as an emergency and passed on to the 999 service.
An ambulance was sent to her home but was turned back when it was just four minutes away.
Her son Lawrence, 24, found Ann, 61, dead from cardiac failure at her home in Portsmouth, Hants, almost 10 hours later.
He checked his mother’s phone log and discovered she had called the NHS 111 line at 8.25am.
A GP turned up at 8.30pm, more than 12 hours after her call.
South Central Ambulance Service said it had launched two investigations into the tragedy on December 28 last year.
One will focus on why the ambulance was called back and the other on why it took so long for an out-of-hour GP to attend.
Lawrence, a teacher said: “Knowing there was an ambulance minutes away from reaching my mum, I believe it could have saved her life. I’m infuriated that she called for help and no help came.
“Instead I was left to find my mother dead and my sister Felicity was robbed of her chance to say goodbye.”
An ambulance spokesman apologised to Ann’s family and said “all aspects” of the response to her 999 call would be examined.
He added: “As the investigation is still ongoing we are unable to comment further.”
“How on earth was no “Red Flag” system in place to at least keep the situation active. It beggars belief she was left to die alone. Her children will feel robbed of the chance, perhaps, to be with her at the end – and that’s precious.”