" I am confident that everything that could have been done was done for my wife"

About: South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust / Emergency ambulance

(as a relative),

In late November my wife became breathless and I called 999 to ask for urgent assistance. A very short while later the rapid response vehicle arrived and the first ambulance almost immediately after. Without delay extra assistance was called for (my wife had a complex medical history, weighed over 200Kg and would clearly need urgent admittance to hospital)

The three paramedics immediately started working on my wife, checking vitals, keeping us both informed of what they were doing and why. The next two ambulances arrived and as I was holding my wife's hand here heart stopped and she ceased to be responsive. I was gently moved out of the way as the paramedics attempted to resuscitate her.

One of the paramedics suggested I should get a friend to come to the house which I did. My recollection is that they took it in turns to perform chest compressions and maintained their efforts to resuscitate my wife and continued their efforts to get a line in and used a defibrillator.

After a long time (which I guess to have been over 90 minutes) the person in charge went round the room and got everybody's agreement, including mine, to stop. I was impressed with the efforts made on my wife's behalf, that there was clearly someone in charge at all times and that every effort was made to involve me. I cannot remember whether I thanked everyone for their efforts at the time.

Later information from the Coroner indicated that my wife had a pulmonary embolism and that was nothing anyone could have done once the episode started.

I would like my thanks for their efforts to be passed on to everybody who attended my wife and to know that I am confident that everything that could have been done was done and at how much I appreciated the professional way I was "kept in the loop" and treated in what was for all concerned a very stressful situation.

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Responses

Response from Laura Martin, Patient Engagement Administrator, Governance, South Western Ambulance Service

picture of Laura Martin

Dear tonebudd

Thank you for taking the time to share your experience. I am so sorry to hear of the sad loss of your wife. My sincere condolences to you and your family at this difficult time.

It is always rewarding to hear that our staff are continuing to provide the best care to our patients, and their loved ones, when we are needed most.

I would very much like to pass your thanks onto the members of staff who attended to your wife. In order to do this I will need a little more information regarding when and where the ambulance attended. Could you please contact me, at your convenience, on 01392 453831, or email laura.martin@swast.nhs.uk.

Thank you again for taking the time to share your story.

Kind regards

Laura

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Response from Laura Martin, Patient Engagement Administrator, Governance, South Western Ambulance Service

picture of Laura Martin

Dear tonebudd

Thank you for contacting me with further details.

I have been able to identify the members of staff who attended your wife and will pass on a formal thank you on your behalf.

Thank you again for taking the time to provide feedback at such a sad and difficult time.

Kind regards

Laura

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