Asthma patient dies after ambulance staff declines to take him to hospital citing Covid-19 fears

A 52-year-old man, an asthma patient,died in Medak district of Telangana allegedly due to non-availability of timely treatment after ambulance staff declined to take him to hospital citing Covid-19 apprehensions and lack of PPE kits, police said on Thursday.
There was delay in the ambulance reaching the spot for shifting the man to a hospital and also the ambulance staff, who suspected him to be having Covid-19 symptoms, declined to take him to the hospital saying they did not have Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) kits, they claimed.(File photo for representation)
There was delay in the ambulance reaching the spot for shifting the man to a hospital and also the ambulance staff, who suspected him to be having Covid-19 symptoms, declined to take him to the hospital saying they did not have Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) kits, they claimed.(File photo for representation)
Updated on Jun 11, 2020 09:29 PM IST
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Hyderabad | ByPress Trust of India | Posted by Niyati Singh

A 52-year-old man, an asthma patient,died in Medak district of Telangana allegedly due to non-availability of timely treatment after ambulance staff declined to take him to hospital citing Covid-19 apprehensions and lack of PPE kits, police said on Thursday.

There was delay in the ambulance reaching the spot for shifting the man to a hospital and also the ambulance staff, who suspected him to be having Covid-19 symptoms, declined to take him to the hospital saying they did not have Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) kits, they claimed.

According to police, the incident happened in Chegunta of Medak district on Wednesday evening when the man was returning to Hyderabad from Kamareddy district in a bus and got down from it to visit a hospital after he suffered difficulty in breathing.

“After the man suffered breathlessness he got the bus stopped saying he will go to a hospital, alighted and started walking towards the hospital but suddenly collapsed near the roadside,” a police official said.

Police rushed to the spot and called up an ambulance which according to them reached there after an hour, but the ambulance personnel fearing that the man had Covid-19 symptoms “refused” to shift him to the hospital, saying they did not have PPE kits.

Police called up another ambulance, meant for shifting Covid-19 patients, which reached the spot after 45 minutes, but by the time it arrived the man had died, the official said.

The man’s family members and relatives were informed and the police arranged another ambulance to shift his body to Hyderabad, the police official said, adding, as it was a natural death the kin did not file any complaint with police.

When asked whether the man had Covid-19 symptoms, the police official said there was no clarity.

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Sunday, June 26, 2022