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Four hour ambulance wait prompts calls for community first aid kit

PUBLISHED: 16:32 09 October 2019 | UPDATED: 16:43 09 October 2019

Ambulance crews took four hours to reach an elderly woman on King's Lynn's Broad Street.  Picture: Chris Bishop

Ambulance crews took four hours to reach an elderly woman on King's Lynn's Broad Street. Picture: Chris Bishop

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A woman has spoken out after a lady was left waiting for an ambulance for four hours outside a high street shop after suffering a fall on the pavement.

An elderly lady was left waiting for the ambulance whilst unable to move after tripping on a loose paving slab on King's Lynn's Broad Street on October 8.

The ambulance was called at around 10am and arrived shortly after 2pm, taking the lady to hospital for further care.

A woman who works in one of the street's shops close to where the fall happened and wishes to remain anonymous, said the incident brought the community together to support the elderly lady and added that she did not blame the ambulance service as they had to prioritise incidents which could be fatal due to cuts,

Brighthouse provided the lady with a duvet, while The Fent Shop provided her with a cardboard screen.

She said the council needed to provide the town centre with a central first aid kit which could provide those in the community with the tools to make ambulance waits more comfortable such as screens and blankets, as she had not seen the town's cycling paramedic for some time and believed it had been cut.

The shop worker added: "The council gets enough money from car parks, and people, elderly people are falling down here regularly, so why can't they put in a central first aid kit, town rangers could hold them."

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A spokesman for the East of England Service NHS Trust said: "We would like to apologise for any distress caused to the patient waiting for an ambulance yesterday in King's Lynn. At the time we received this call, we were experiencing high demand and had to prioritise patients with life-threatening injuries and illnesses. This unfortunately meant that some people who did not have life-threatening cases may have experienced longer waits. We do understand however that these situations can be stressful for patients and their families and again, we are very sorry."

The spokesman did not respond to a request for comment on whether the cycling paramedic was still in operation.

Those wishing to provide feedback on the ambulance service can do so by calling 0800 028 3382 or 01234 243320, or email eoeasnt.feedback@nhs.net.

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