HSE to review response to Midleton incident

Child taken to hospital as no ambulance available

The injured child was taken to Cork University Hospital and died two days after being admitted. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien

The injured child was taken to Cork University Hospital and died two days after being admitted. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien

Sun, May 12, 2013, 22:31

A review of the emergency response to an incident where a seriously injured child had to be taken to hospital in a private car because no ambulance was available is expected to look at how the incident was reported to the emergency services.

Vakaris Martinaitis from The Paddocks, Castleredmond in Midleton, Co Cork, died at Cork University Hospital last Wednesday, two days after being rushed there from his home by his neighbour, former Cork hurler, Kevin Hennessy in his private car.

The boy, who would have celebrated his second birthday on Saturday, had suffered serious head injuries after falling from an upstairs window of the family home.

Mr Hennessy, coming to the assistance of parents, Vidas and Aukse, rang 999 but was told no ambulance was available to go to Midleton. After taking the child to SouthDoc in Midleton, he took him and his father to Cork University Hospital in his own car.

The incident led to immediate calls on the HSE to clarify the situation and on Friday night, the HSE South issued a statement in which it confirmed that an emergency ambulance had been immediately available to attend the incident. It’s expected the terms of reference for the review will be finalised within a few days.

It’s understood the review will focus on communications and in particular the level of detail given in the emergency call received by ambulance control about the exact circumstances of the incident.