Pensioner, 89, in three hour wait in snow for ambulance

This is the bruised and swollen face of an 89-year-old woman who was made to wait nearly three hours in the snow for an ambulance after falling in a Doncaster street.

Doreen Gibson, who sustained a broken nose and severe bruising, had to lie on the pavement in freezing conditions for two hours and 45 minutes despite nine 999 phone calls being made.

Mrs Gibson fell on a piece of uneven pavement at Rossington Market and was covered in towels and sheltered. from the snow by traders, who waited with her until an ambulance from Hull finally arrived.

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Mrs Gibson, of Skipwith Gardens, Rossington said: “It’s a wonder I’m still here after what happened. I was just lying there thinking, ‘Where the hell are they?’

“I was absolutely soaking wet through.

“It’s a good job the people on the market were there to help me. Absolutely everyone was disgusted by how long it took.”

Mrs Gibson’s family, who are making an official complaint to the ambulance service, said she is lucky to be alive after the ordeal.

Her granddaughter-in-law Amanda Morris Gibson said: “She suffers with diabetes and arthritis and was lying there for nearly three hours. If it wasn’t for the two market stall traders keeping her warm, she may not have survived.

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“Things could have been very different – she could have gone into a diabetic coma or died from hypothermia.

“I am absolutely appalled and disgusted that an 89-year-old woman who has paid into the system all her life was just left in the street.”

Market trader Laini Birch, who stayed with Mrs Gibson after the fall and called for an ambulance nine times, said: “It was really scary. She was absolutely covered in blood, coughing blood up, slipping in and out of consciousness and the ambulance service didn’t seem to care.

“I was fuming, one person I spoke to said there were more important people out there and when I explained her condition and age she said age doesn’t matter.

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“I think it’s disgusting and I just can’t believe that they took so long.”

Jackie Cole, locality director of emergency operations in South Yorkshire at Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust, said: “We are sorry for any distress caused in relation to this incident and ask that the family of the patient contact us to discuss their concerns so that we can respond to them directly.

“We would like to reassure members of the public that our main priority continues to be providing a safe, responsive and high quality service to the people of Yorkshire.”

A spokesman for Doncaster Council, which owns the land where Mrs Gibson fell, said they are looking into the incident.