Thursday, 17 April 2014

Health: Dad’s A&E concerns after cardiac arrest

A 38-year-old father from Halifax has expressed his concerns over the threat to close Calderdale Royal Hospital’s A&E.

Andy Thomas works as a lawyer in Halifax and lives at Savile Lea in the town with his wife Julia and his five-year-old son.

In February 2010, Mr Thomas had a cardiac arrest at his previous home between Barkisland and Stainland.

Ambulance crews were sent from Calderdale A&E and managed to get his heart beating again.

He was rushed to A&E where he received treatment including an implant in his chest which monitors his heart rate and detects abnormal rhythms - the device delivers an electric shock to his heart if cardiac arrest is likely.

“The issue for me is that although an ambulance can do most of the initial treatment, you’re going to have more ambulance travel time,” said Mr Thomas.

“My question is how many more ambulances are they going to put on, because more of them are going to be tied up travelling to Huddersfield.”

Mr Thomas can’t believe that Huddersfield A&E could be chosen over Halifax, he said: “From the one time I’ve been to Huddersfield A&E, it didn’t strike me as being very modern, whereas the site at Halifax is only a few years old.”

The implant that Mr Thomas had installed has been successful in regulating the issues he has had with his heart.But he is still concerned that something could go wrong or his condition could get worse.

“It’s a massive comfort to know that there’s an A&E so close to where I live,” he said.

“I had two shocks in a day and that knocked the stuffing out of me - that was quite exceptional and I felt that I needed to call an ambulance and go to A&E.

“Modern ambulances are very well equipped, but they are not hospitals on wheels.

“There are things like strokes, for example, where you need to get a person to hospital as quickly as possible, but you can’t tell what sort of stroke a person has had until they get scanned, and they can’t do that in an ambulance.”

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