Asthma sufferer, 10, had to wait two hours for help

Luke Jones,10 with his mum Lisa Jones
Luke Jones,10 with his mum Lisa Jones
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An angry mum has hit out at the length of time it took for an ambulance to arrive when her son was suffering from breathing difficulties.

Lisa Jones, 38, from Holme Slack, Preston, claims it took two hours for a paramedic to attend after she called for help for her 10-year-old son Luke.

Today the North West Ambulance Service disputed the time and said it was one hour 36 minutes.

Mum-of-four Lisa says asthma sufferer Luke had been to primary care on Saturday and the doctors on Monday suffering with his breathing.

On Monday night Lisa became concerned about Luke’s breathing and rang 111.

She says after asking for advice over whether to go to primary care or A&E she was told an ambulance would be dispatched, this was just before 7pm. She said: “I waited for 45 minutes and I thought it was strange so I rang back.

“I was told they were dealing with a lot of life threatening conditions but Luke’s ambulance had been dispatched.

“About 45 minutes later I rang back again and a man said I needed to ring 999. I rang 999 and explained the situation.

“They apologised and said there a lot of life-threatening calls. Is a breathing problem not life threatening?

“Just before 9pm the paramedic car turned up.”

The family then had to wait another 20 minutes for the ambulance to arrive.

She said: “I am furious. I don’t think they were talking it seriously. It has never ever happened before. Luke was getting more concerned, he kept asking me ‘where is the ambulance?’”

Luke, who has a form of autism, was in hospital until Wednesday, his mum said he had had an asthma attack.

Lisa said: “I just want to know what they class as life-threatening. I would have thought a child with asthma was. I had no money, I couldn’t get there, if I could’ve gone, I would’ve gone.”

A spokesman for the North West Ambulance said: “We understand that waiting for an ambulance can be distressing for the patient and their family and we apologise that the family are not happy with the service received.

“When received, all 999 calls are categorised within the control rooms, based on the information given, to ensure patients are prioritised on the basis of their medical need.

“Although the service strives to attend to every patient as quickly as possible, patients with serious, life threatening conditions require a more urgent response. We have received a complaint from a member of the patient’s family and are currently looking into the incident. We will share the findings with the patient’s relative once concluded.”