91-year-old with broken shoulder left waiting for ambulance had to be taken to hospital by passing strangers
A 91-year-old Second World War veteran with a fractured shoulder had to be taken to hospital by PASSERS-BY after he was left freezing in the street for an hour and a half waiting for an ambulance.
Elderly Jim Enser, from Waltham, Lincs, fell off his bike on Sunday – dislocatand an ambulance was called at 2.03pm.
But when it still hadn’t arrived by 3.26pm, concerned strangers took pity on him and drove him themselves.
Jim said: “At my age sometimes you don’t want to go out but I’m very independent – it’s important.”
The war veteran came off his bike while riding back from the shops having slipped on the ice when putting his foot down on the pavement.
Despite his age and horrific pain from his dislocated and fractured shoulder, he managed to pull himself up on a metal gate after falling from his bike.
Passers-by helped comfort him with blankets and called for the ambulance.
But despite Jim’s claims that they called again on more than one occasion to find out where the ambulance was, an hour and a half later no ambulance had arrived and a good Samaritan had to call A&E at Grimsby’s hospital and asking if they could take him directly.
The ambulance was cancelled and Jim was ferried to hospital thanks to a kind stranger.
He was discharged later that evening after undergoing x-rays and was asked to return for a follow-up appointment.
The brave pensioner said he was now worried about other elderly patients facing similar delays.
He said: “I’ve never complained about anything like this before. I’m not blaming the paramedics but I am blaming the way it is run. The hospital staff’s care was excellent as well.
“I’ve got every admiration for them but it’s the system. I was shivering.
“East Midlands Ambulance Service has been good to me before and they are doing their best, but the point is that I don’t want other people to have to stay by the roadside.”
Peter Ripley, from East Midlands Ambulance Service said: “We haven’t been approached by the patient about the response to the 999 call.
“However the delay experienced clearly fell short of the high standard our patients should expect, and we are very sorry about that.
“Patient safety and wellbeing is at the forefront of what we do and we have been working very hard behind the scenes to manage the increase in demand and expectations on our service.”
Jim served at RAF Waltham and was among the Allied invasion force which liberated western Europe in 1944, landing in Normandy on June 16.
He spent much of the rest of his life working in development for British Airways.
Despite his age, Jim rides his bicycle three or four times a week and said he will not be perturbed by his fall. He said both he and his wife Jean, 87, were fiercely independent.
He said: “I want to try to stay active. I don’t think I should stop doing things like riding my bike.”