Family forced to drive to hospital with unresponsive baby over ambulance wait 2 years ago

Family forced to drive to hospital with unresponsive baby over ambulance wait

A Dublin father has spoken of his distress at not being able to get an ambulance for his baby when she stopped breathing.

The man said that he rang 999 when his 18-month-old daughter became unresponsive one evening.

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She had had a fever earlier in the evening but then stopped breathing and began to turn blue, he told The Journal.

The man waited for half an hour for an ambulance but none arrived.

He called back and was told that it was a very busy night and that there was no guarantee of when an ambulance would be available.

Family forced to drive to hospital with unresponsive baby over ambulance wait

The dispatcher told him that the little girl would need medical attention because of her young age.

 

"That wasn’t much of a choice – we had no option but to drive to A&E ourselves," he said.

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"I’m very thankful to my dad for coming to our aid that night and driving us to Temple St as I learned in hindsight that I was so upset and distressed, I was not in a fit state to drive.

“If I had got behind the wheel of a car at that point to drive to A&E, there could have been a bigger tragedy and this is another key risk caused by poor ambulance response times.”

Dublin City Council responded by saying that the night in question was very busy and that the family were out into a "sizeable" queue based on priority.