Local Sinn Fein councillor Brian McCaffrey said it was ‘totally unacceptable’ that a man in serious health difficulties was forced to wait such an extended period of time for treatment. He explained the incident, which took place on Saturday.
“It happened in the Roslea Arms and basically the call was made to the ambulance service at ten to six (5.50pm), but it didn’t arrive on scene until ten past seven (7.10pm).”
“It’s totally unacceptable, Roslea as it stands is 27 miles away from the South West Acute Hospital and given the distance, people in this area are already at significant risk, they depend on a timely response to any emergency.”
“What I want to know is what measures are being put in place to ensure this doesn’t happen again.”
In another startling revelation the newly elected Erne East councillor told the Herald that as far as he was aware the ambulance that did eventually arrive, was not from Fermanagh, rather from the Craigavon/Lurgan area.
While on this occasion there was no fatality Mr McCaffrey admitted on another day it could have been much different.
“Thankfully the man involved was OK and was attended to by a couple of first aiders who had only recently been trained up. For one of them it was their first experience of having to respond to an emergency.
“It could have been a situation where nobody present had first aid knowledge. It was also fortuitous that it occurred where it did and somebody was on hand.
“If it had been someone living on their own in the countryside surrounding the village it could have been a very different story.”
“We must get an explanation from Ambulance service for the delay, but more importantly there needs to be a firm guarantee that this cannot and should not happen again.”
Mr McCaffrey has contacted the Ambulance Service to enquire about the nature and reason for the delay and has asked for assurances that any responses are prompt to all areas of the county.
At the time of going press the Herald was unable to get a comment from the Ambulance Service.
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