ERI staff drive unresponsive man in hospital car park to A&E themselves as ambulance would have been 45 minutes
A passing doctor administered first aid to the unresponsive casualty on the back seat.
HOSPITAL workers who found a motorist slumped at the wheel of his car at Edinburgh Royal Infirmary drove him to A&E themselves - after being told to wait 45 minutes for an ambulance.
Contractors from facilities firm Engie dialled 999 for help then took matters into their own hands as a passing doctor administered first aid to the unresponsive casualty on the back seat.
The battle to save the man came after they jumped into his car and sped to the emergency department where he was handed over to the care of specialist medical staff.
It is understood that one Engie worker used his radio to co-ordinate the moving of cars to make way while his colleague took the wheel of the ill man's motor, as the doctor battled to keep him alive.
An ERI source praised the “quick-thinking” pair, adding: “They really did make a difference to this patient.”
The source continued: “The quick-thinking of these staff have certainly given this gentleman a great chance of recovery and highlights how caring staff on the ground can make all the difference.
“I would like to commend the actions of these team members for their outstanding efforts and I do believe that this turned out happily for all involved.
“Quick-thinking, positive intervention and coordinated activities as a team certainly helped a very serious situation.”
The drama unfolded last week at the north end of car park 2B (D) at ERI and the Scottish Ambulance Service (SAS) has since apologised for the delay.
But Scottish Conservative Lothians MSP Miles Briggs said the incident highlighted pressures on the SAS and NHS Lothian.
He said: “This man’s life has been saved by the heroic efforts of staff, but it should never have come to that.
“It’s a sign of the pressure the NHS and ambulance service are under that this remarkable incident took place.”
“Both are struggling, and this man almost paid with his life. Had he collapsed anywhere else he would have been in real trouble.”
Mr Briggs added: “The SNP government has been in charge of health for 12 years and has to explain how this could be allowed to happen.”
“A spokesman for the SAS said: “Despite extremely high winter demand, our priority remains saving as many lives as possible; our new triage system has enabled us to prioritise patients who are critically ill and we have saved more lives as a result.”
He added: “ Any unnecessary delay is unacceptable and we would like to apologise for any distress experienced.”