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Dad reports SOS operator after son's death

TT/The Local · 23 Apr 2011, 09:01

Published: 23 Apr 2011 09:01 GMT+02:00

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And several counties in Sweden will switch emergency operator services to Medhelp after SOS Alarm did not meet requirements, reported news agency TT.

The step-father has already reported to the police the nurse who refused to send an ambulance to his step-son. The 23-year-old eventually died.

A preliminary investigation into the incident has begun.

New information about the incident has come forward since the family was able to read the transcripts from the 15-minute conversation between the 23-year-old man and the emergency operator.

“It's impossible to describe how it feels to hear your child cry out for help and not get it,” the step-father told the Dagens Nyheter daily.

On a Sunday morning in January, the 23-year-old had difficulty breathing and fainted when he got up to call for help just before 6am. But the nurse doubted that he was sick and he gave up trying to convince her.

The nurse was fired after having worked for SOS Alarm for over a year. During that time, three customer complaints were filed against the nurse.

From November 1st 2011, Uppsala, Västmanland, Södermanland, and Gotland counties are set to drop SOS Alarm in favour of Medhelp. SOS Alarm lost the procurement because the company had not undertaken the necessary improvements that had been mandated by law.

Story continues below…

The disagreement was also over support for decisions concerning the provision of assistance in emergency situations, the questions the emergency operator asks to be able to judge medical care need.

TT/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

10:01 April 23, 2011 by Keith #5083
This profoundly tragic incident is repeatedly being reported with an emphasis upon the shortcomings of the 'nurse'. I hope it will also be remembered that the nurse did report this to a doctor who, it is claimed, tried 3 times to reach the victim by phone. Unsuccessfully.

It is also worth asking why the 'doctor' did not make an emergency response in that circumstance.
11:02 April 23, 2011 by just a question
stop calling this stupid emergency service and next time call a friend or family with a car that drive you directly to the hospital
11:10 April 23, 2011 by Thompsuleme
Agree with you Keith. However I think her employers also have a lot of explaining to do. I thought there were standard procedures for situations, The nurse was admittedly too slow to react but she did pass responsibility on.
11:53 April 23, 2011 by foxpur
@"just a question": If I had to get to a hospital I would be hard pressed to find any friends with a car and family are in another country.

When you call in a emgency you percieve you have an emergeny, dont expect to be second-guessed by the company you call when it is that apparent something is wrong.
09:59 April 26, 2011 by wolverine2k
All the staff is advised to save money wherever they can. In some cases, it even means that the staff is advised to avoid getting more than x number of patients a day, no more than x number of injections to be used per day, no more than x number of calls to be answered, etc.

I have a nurse friend who basically confirmed these kind of memos that regularly circulate in the workplaces. Most of the times all these cost savings simply backfire.

I on the other hand have been to emergency and was provided a pretty good service. But I didn't use 112. I just went there, asked for a doctor, explained the reception nurse of the problem and things were on the way. So just get a taxi and get to the hospital.
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