St Osyth: Parkinson's sufferer in four-hour ambulance wait

A PARKINSON’S disease sufferer is frequently left stranded on the floor of his home for hours on end due to ambulance delays.

Alex Rignall, 74, suffers falls in his home on a regular basis due to his debilitating condition.

Wife Gay Rignall is unable to lift him when he falls due to a spine condition of her own, and they are forced to use a care alarm which automatically alerts an ambulance.

But the couple say they have to wait longer each time for an ambulance to arrive, and have slammed cuts which have stretched the service.

Gay, of Broadstrood in St Osyth, called the Gazette after Alex’s latest fall, just after 9am on Thursday.

She said: “Alex suffers a lot of falls and with all these cutbacks I am absolutely petrified for him.

“To have to wait on the floor for that long just is not good enough.

“Recently we have had to wait two and a half hours one day, four and a half hours another day. It is disgraceful."

A paramedic arrived to help Alex at about 1.45pm on Thursday.

He had been on the floor for more than four hours.

Ambulance spokesman Gary Sanderson said: “We were alerted at 9.35am and this call was graded a green four call which is not life-threatening and requires a response within 60 minutes or phone assessment within 60 minutes.

“Due to a high volume of 999 calls which required an immediate response such as heart attacks and unconscious patients, we did not meet this response time frame.

“We are working very closely with other NHS partners to address Mr Rignall’s condition and provide the best care pathway to help the patient in the future.”

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