This account has been sent into us (anonymously) from a Police Officer serving on the front line (UK). Yet again, it highlights the knock-on effect of an overstretched Ambulance Service, combined with an under-resourced Police Force:
“Saturday late shift: There was a music festival going on, with the usual excess alcohol consumption, so a call had gone out for extra officers (mainly Specials) as we knew it was going to be a busy night.
Early in the evening, we got a call that an elderly lady had fallen in her bathroom, but the ambulance crews were all busy with drink related issues.
We were so busy that it was the Sarge who grabbed another officer and responded to it. No hard feelings; it happens – and we expected ambulance response soon.
7 hours later, the Sarge asks my colleague and I to come to the address, where there still has been no ambulance response.
We turn up to find the elderly lady still on the floor of her bathroom.
For 7 hours. We end up having to unscrew the door and take it off so that we can help her up and into bed, but the kicker is that the Sarge and his crewmate still have to wait at the address for another few hours for the ambulance to arrive because it was a medical issue, and we can’t sign off on those!
The shift was extended by an hour or two that night, because we were stretched so thin.
We didn’t have the resources to cover our own jobs, let alone ambulance jobs as well.
Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind giving my green oppos a helping hand, and I know that they are in a similar boat to us in terms of resourcing, but spending pretty much the entire shift dealing with a medical casualty?
That’s not what we’re here for”.
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