This site is intended for UK healthcare professionals
Medscape UK Univadis Logo
Medscape UK Univadis Logo

Ambulance Apology Over Patient 'Mistakenly Declared Dead'

An ambulance trust has apologised after a patient who was declared "dead" later woke up in hospital.

As first reported by The Northern Echo, the individual was taken by paramedics to Darlington Memorial Hospital on Friday. The newspaper reported that the patient had been declared dead following an incident earlier that day, but woke up in hospital.

The patient has not been identified and their current condition has not been revealed.

The North East Ambulance Service (NEAS) apologised to the patient's family and said an inquiry has begun.

Investigation Underway

Director of paramedicine Andrew Hodge said: "As soon as we were made aware of this incident, we opened an investigation and contacted the patient's family. We are deeply sorry for the distress that this has caused them.

"A full review of this incident is being undertaken and we are unable to comment any further at this stage.

"The colleagues involved are being supported appropriately and we will not be commenting further about any individuals at this point."

Critical Report

The incident comes just 5 months after a critical report was published into how NEAS ambulance workers had covered up failings and withheld evidence from inquests.

Following her report into the service, Dame Marianne Griffiths paid tribute to the families who shared their experiences, and said: "It is clear that they are not only devastated by the loss of their loved ones but also by the ambulance service's response to the legitimate questions about their care."

County Durham and Darlington NHS Foundation Trust, which runs the Darlington Memorial Hospital, did not wish to add to the statement issued by NEAS.

For more news, follow Medscape on  Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube