Family's fury as woman dies after being forced to wait in ambulance for 15 hours
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The family of a 70-year-old woman who died after being forced to wait in an ambulance for '15 hours' are 'angry' and 'want some answers'.
Marie Shenton died at Torbay Hospital, South Devon after the lengthy wait time.
"To die the way she did, it wasn't humane. You wouldn't let the dog suffer like that," sister Bridget Haynes told Sky News.
The incident took place in November last year after the family had called an ambulance because Marie started to vomit blood.
The family claimed that her call was treated as a 'category one emergency' and the ambulance responded quickly to take her to hospital.
However, when she arrived, it reportedly took 15 hours for her to be seen.
"She was vomiting blood and the paramedics went in and told the staff what was happening," her sister, who'd previously worked in the NHS for 37 years, explained.
"They sent a nurse out to take a blood test.
"Then Marie wanted to go to the toilet and they took her to the toilet and she was just passing pure blood so paramedics told staff again, but nobody came."
The paramedics had also allegedly informed staff about her worsening condition.
When the hospital were able to find a bed for Marie, her health did not improve.
Her health had deteriorated by the time she was admitted into hospital, Bridget says. And when the family arrived, they were told Marie had fallen out of bed.
"She was just mumbling. And all she kept saying was, 'thank you, thank you, sorry, thank you'. That's all she kept saying," she said.
Marie died later in the afternoon.
"She bled to death," Bridget said. "It shouldn't have happened. I am just so angry about it. I just want some answers.
"I want to know why my sister fell out of bed for a start, and why in this day and age - 15 hours in an ambulance? We're like a third-world country. And we're one of the richest countries going and this is happening. It's not right."
Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust's medical director, Ian Currie, told the publication: "We would like to send our heartfelt condolences to Mrs Shenton's family.
"We cannot comment on individual cases due to patient confidentiality but remain in contact with her next of kin.
"We don't want anyone waiting in an ambulance longer than necessary and all patients arriving at our emergency department are triaged and assessed, with the most clinically urgent being prioritised.
"We work closely with South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust to make sure everyone waiting in an ambulance is robustly assessed, monitored, and their care is escalated and prioritised appropriately."
Tyla has contacted Torbay and South Devon NHS for additional comment.