South East Wales

Paramedics Ian Powell and Lindsey C. Brown 'left patient with his friends'

Two Welsh Ambulance Service paramedics have been suspended after not taking a Newport partygoer, who later died, to hospital.

Ian Powell and Lindsey C. Brown were suspended for a year by independent regulator, the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC).

The patient, who had drunk a large amount of alcohol, was left with his friends rather than taken to hospital.

This decision had not been explained satisfactorily, the hearing was told.

The panel of the HCPC conduct and competence committee heard the paramedics did not transport the patient - who has not been named and was referred to as Patient A - to hospital, leaving him instead in the care of friends.

Satisfactory explanation

Another ambulance was called for the patient 24 minutes later, at which point he was in cardiac arrest. He was then taken to hospital but did not regain consciousness and died.

Chair of the panel Linda Summers said: "It is a fact that neither can nor should be ignored that Patient A died.

"However, it is important to record the fact that neither the terms of the HCPC's allegation, nor the way in which the case was advanced at the hearing, involved a contention that it was the defaults of Mr Powell and Miss Brown that resulted in Patient A's death."

She said the panel had made no decision on the matter "and it should not be thought the panel's decision carries with it an implied finding one way or the other on this issue of causation".

Ms Summers added: "What underpins this case was the failure, as already noted, to assimilate all the relevant information at the scene and, secondly, the allowing of irrelevant factors to over-ride clinical judgement."

She added that at no time had either paramedic been able to offer a satisfactory explanation why the house and the people provided a safer environment for the patient than the hospital.

Both workers were suspended from the register for 12 months with an interim suspension order in place to cover the appeal period.

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