Eastern Cape emergency workers under investigation for 'inhumanely' carrying patient by hands and feet

2018-04-11 11:43
EMS workers have been observed carrying a patient into an ambulance. (Twitter)

EMS workers have been observed carrying a patient into an ambulance. (Twitter)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Two Eastern Cape emergency service workers are under investigation after a photo emerged of them carrying a patient by her hands and feet, instead of with a stretcher, a provincial health spokesperson said on Wednesday.

The EMS workers were called to the Home Affairs department in East London on Monday following the reported collapse of a woman who was in the queue, said spokesperson Sizwe Kupelo.

A photo then emerged on social media of one worker carrying her by her feet, and the other by her hands, to an ambulance behind them.

Kupelo said they verified the photo and launched an investigation.

"There is a breach of protocol and procedure. When you look at the picture, both crew members are not wearing gloves," he said.


READ: Ambulance robbed in Port Elizabeth

The proper procedure is to put on gloves, assess the patient, put him/her on a stretcher, check for vital signs and then load the person into the ambulance.

"The manner in which they handle the patient may even worsen her health condition. They are carting the patient in a very inhumane manner, that is putting the EMS into disrepute," said Kupelo.

He added that the provincial EMS had adequate resources.

The two workers are among the longest serving emergency service crew in the province.

They were served with letters on Tuesday asking for their side of the story and to give reasons why the department should not take further action.

The deadline for their response is five working days.

"If their response is not sufficient, then the department will have to engage in internal disciplinary processes."

Those found guilty in internal disciplinary procedures were reported to the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA).

The HPCSA has a professional board for emergency care workers.

According to its website, workers should be capable in using stretchers and in general patient transfers.

KEEP UPDATED on the latest news by subscribing to our FREE newsletter.

- FOLLOW News24 on Twitter

Read more on:    port elizabeth  |  healthcare

Inside News24

Most Read
News In Your Area
Top Lifestyle
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.