Disabled pensioner left in 'sprawl' in Chichester road

The ambulance response time has been called 'inhumane' after an 89-year-old wheelchair user was left in the road on Saturday (March 2).

Monday, 4th March 2019, 3:56 pm
Updated Wednesday, 6th March 2019, 10:55 am
West Street Chichester. Picture courtesy of Google Maps

The man was waiting at a bus stop on West Street when he fell from his wheelchair off a kerb and was left in a 'sprawl' in the road, according to an eye-witness.

A 999 call was made at 2.10pm for the ambulance service but the caller was told the wait would be around two hours. A second call was made to the ambulance service half-an-hour later to alert staff that the man had been moved into a building.

The ambulance then arrived at 3.40pm and remained at the scene for another fifty minutes, treated the man, and left taking nobody to hospital.

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Mark Chapman, who saw the incident unfold called the incident 'inhumane' and said: "It must be unacceptable for an 89-year-old disabled man to lay on the road after falling for two hours as advised by the 999 ambulance call handler."

A spokesman for the South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust pointed out the range of categories ambulance staff adhere to.

A spokesperson said: “We take all concerns raised seriously. We have recently been contacted by a member of public regarding this incident and will of course respond to them directly.

"Based on the information provided by the caller, this call was categorised as a Category 3 call to which we would aim to respond to within two hours. An ambulance crew arrived on scene in approximately 90 minutes.

“According to our records, the patient was able to be discharged from our care at the scene. We appreciate that waiting for an ambulance can be frustrating but we have a duty to prioritise our response to our most seriously ill and injured patients in line with national call categorisation. We wish the patient a speedy recovery.”