Pensioner in need of urgent care waits 17-hours for an ambulance

Published on 15 Sep 2021, 13:46
A 72-year-old woman in need of urgent care waited 17 hours for an ambulance before being admitted to hospital in Fife.

Roberta Stephen was eventually taken from her home in Cardenden to Victoria Hospital in Kirkcaldy, where she subsequently tested positive for coronavirus.

Her partner, Robert Delussey, told STV News it had been a distressing time for them both.

He said: “The nurse that was here said ‘two hours to four hours maximum’ as they were very busy, which is fair enough.

“But it went on and on, right through the night and I never got a wink of sleep, I was sat here looking out the window at every vehicle that passed.

“It never ever turned up until the next day.

“From five o’clock on the Monday evening (September 6), it didn’t arrive here until quarter to ten on Tuesday morning.

“It was distressing for her and me because I have an artificial leg and I’ve got prostate cancer – now I had been up from about 6.30am that morning, so I never slept right through.”

Roberta’s case comes after Unite Scotland said last week the Scottish Ambulance Service should declare a ‘major incident’ at hospitals where emergency patients face delays to be admitted.

On average ambulance response to a 999 call can take between 55 minutes, and one hour and ten minutes, from call to completion.

But they are now said to be taking six hours on average due to NHS pressures.