Page last updated at 17:53 GMT, Friday, 8 May 2009 18:53 UK

Son is angry over ambulance wait

Agnes Beardsley
Agnes Beardsley has a history of falls

A Derbyshire man is angry his 98-year-old mother had to wait several hours for an ambulance, on two occasions, after injuring herself in falls.

Brian Beardsley said his mother Agnes had lengthy waits for an ambulance called by a doctor at her Ilkeston care home on 4 March and 27 April.

Mr Beardsley says the waits were not acceptable for a 98-year-old.

East Midlands Ambulance Service officials apologised for the delay but said they had to prioritise 999 calls.

Brian Beardsley says the waiting time was "unacceptable"

Mrs Beardsley, who has a history of falling, suffered head injuries during three falls in one day at the Victoria Care Home on 27 April.

Paramedics were on hand in minutes for two but for the third she had a lengthy wait.

Mr Beardsley said: "How many times is it going to happen to other people?

"They say they were busy with 999 calls on Monday and Wednesday nights, which for me, I can't accept."

An ambulance spokesperson said in a statement: "On the first day, her doctor asked us to provide transport to hospital within a four hour time frame.

"Unfortunately we did take 20 minutes longer to attend and we have extended our apologies to the family for that.

"On the second day... we received the third call from Mrs Beardsley's doctor for transport.

"Again, 999 emergency calls took precedence and this meant that we were not able to attend as quickly as we would have wished.

"We would like to point out that on both days, Mrs Beardsley was in a place of safety in a care home and that we provided a high level of care to Mrs Beardsley.

"Whilst 999 emergency calls will always take priority because they involve life-threatening situations, we have extended our apologies to Mrs Beardsley's son."

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