Heart Attack Victim Waits 43 Minutes To Get To Hospital

Heart Attack Victim Waits 43 Minutes To Get To Hospital

August 17, 2019 0 By Bertrand Dibbert


MINUTES COUNT WHEN YOU ARE HAVING A HEART ATTACK, BUT IT TOOK THE CITY’S FIRE DEPARTMENT MORE THAN 40 MINUTES TO GET A 56-YEAR-OLD MAN TO THE HOSPITAL FOR HELP. 2 INVESTIGATOR PAM ZEKMAN CONTINUES TO REPORT ON SLOW AMBULANCE RESPONSE TIME, TONIGHT EXPOSING THE TRAUMA CAUSED BY CHICAGO’S AMBULANCE SHORTAGE. MY DAD IS HAVING A HEART ATTACK AND I NEEDED TO GET BERLIN’S. Reporter: 911 CALL WAS RECEIVED AT 2:09 ON JULY 3rd. IS HE AWAKE? ARE YOU AWAKE, DADDY? HE’S AWAKE BUT HE’S LAYING ON THE GROUND. Reporter: STATE STANDARDS REQUIRE FIRE DEPARTMENTS TO PROVIDE ADVANCED LIFE SUPPORT ASSISTANCE WITHIN SIX MINUTES. A FIRE ENGINE ARRIVED NINE MINUTES AFTER IT WAS DISPATCHED WITH A PARAMEDIC ON BOARD. BY THAT TIME, HE WAS IN AND OUT OF CONSCIOUSNESS. HE WAS MUMBLING WORKED AND JUST HOLDING HIS CHEST, HAVING EXTREME CHEST PAINS. Reporter: BECAUSE A FIRE ENGINE CANNOT TRANSPORT A PATIENT TO THE HOSPITAL, THE FAMILY WAITED HELPLESSLY. THE FIREMEN WERE SAYING THAT THERE WAS A DELAY BECAUSE THERE WERE NO AMBULANCES AVAILABLE. Reporter: CBS 2 HAS LEARNED THAT NEARBY AMBULANCES WERE ON OTHER RUNS ARE IN FOR REPAIRS. AND 2:35, AN AMBULANCE THAT WAS MILES AWAY FINALLY ARRIVED, 24 MINUTES AFTER IT WAS DISPATCHED. 43 MINUTES AFTER THE FIRST CALL FOR AN AMBULANCE, THE PATIENT WAS BROUGHT HERE TO THIS HOSPITAL, WHERE DOCTORS TREATED HIM FOR A MAJOR HEART ATTACK. EVERY MINUTE COUNTS IN THE RESPONSE TO A PATIENT HAVING A HEART ATTACK. Reporter: DR. DAVID FISHMAN’S PATIENT SURVIVES, BUT WITH IRREVERSIBLE DAMAGE TO HIS HEART MUSCLE. 43 MINUTES FROM THE TIME A CALL WAS MADE FOR A HEART ATTACK VICTIM, TO THE TIME THE VICTIM GOT TO THE HOSPITAL. THAT’S ABSOLUTELY AWFUL. THE AMOUNT OF DAMAGE IS DEFINITELY RELATED TO THE RESPONSE TIME. Reporter: FOR YEARS, WE’VE REPORTED ON EXCESSIVE RESPONSE TIMES THAT PARAMEDICS BLAME ON A SHORTAGE OF VALENCES. PEOPLE COULD DIE BECAUSE AN AMBULANCE DOES NOT GET TO THEM IN TIME. I ABSOLUTELY BELIEVE THAT PEOPLE HAVE DIED ALREADY. Reporter: IN JANUARY, WE ASKED THE MAYOR ABOUT A 32 MINUTE RESPONSE TIME FOR A HIT AND RUN VICTIM. SHE’S ON THE GROUND, WAITING FOR AN AMBULANCE. OBVIOUSLY, I DON’T WANT TO SEE THAT IN ANY PART OF THE CITY. THEY ARE GOING TO GET ALL THE RESOURCES THEY NEED AND CONTINUE TO SERVE EVERY PART OF THE CITY OF CHICAGO. Reporter: AFTER THAT STORY, THE MAYOR ORDERED HIS FIRE COMMISSIONER TO PUT IN A NEW AMLIN’S REQUEST. 4 YEARS AGO, ADDITIONAL AMBULANCES WERE PROMISED BY THE CITY BUT NEVER PURCHASED. I BELIEVE HE COULD HAVE DIED. I REALLY DO. HE DEFINITELY COULD HAVE DIED. A CITY SPOKESMAN SAYS PARAMEDICS ON THE FIRE TRUCKS HAVE THE EQUIPMENT NEEDED TO DIAGNOSE AND STABILIZE A PATIENT, BUT, FIVE NO AMBULANCES WILL SOON BE ADDED TO THE FLEET OF 75 SO THE DEPARTMENT CAN BEST RESPOND TO CALLS WITH INCREASED EFFICIENCY. CRITICS SAY FIVE IS NOT ENOUGH. A STUDY FOR THE LOCAL PARAMEDICS UNION DONE BY THE INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF FIREFIGHTERS CONCLUDED THAT CHICAGO NEEDS AN ADDITIONAL AMBULANCE, TOTALING 25.