Wednesday 16 October 2019

Ambulance services 'enhanced' where toddler died – Kenny

Vakaris Martinaitis fell from window
Vakaris Martinaitis fell from window

Fiach Kelly Political Correspondent

TAOISEACH Enda Kenny says there are enhanced ambulance services in an area where a critically injured toddler had to be driven to hospital because there was no ambulance available to take him.

Vakaris Martinaitis from east Cork had to be driven to Cork University Hospital because there was no ambulance available after he fell from a window.

The two-year-old boy died 48 hours after sustaining the horrific head injuries following the freak fall in Midleton last week.

Mr Kenny was questioned on the incident in the Dail by Fianna Fail leader Micheal Martin, but the Taoiseach said the HSE had set up an investigation.

He also told Mr Martin ambulance services in the area had been enhanced, and it was important to find out why there were no emergency services at the time.

"It is important that we get the facts of the sequence of events that meant an ambulance was not dispatched when, I understand, an ambulance was available to deal with this particular incident," Mr Kenny said. "However, it is important that we ascertain the facts as to what happened after the 999 call was made."

Mr Martin asked about ambulance shortages, but Mr Kenny said the incident is being probed by the HSE's incident management team, and added the full facts had to be ascertained.

Mr Martin said there "are concerns across the country about the adequacy of the ambulance services and, above all, the response times in getting to emergency life-threatening situations".

But the Taoiseach said: "There has been no loss for the national ambulance service in east Cork – in fact it has been enhanced".

"Emergency ambulances in east Cork are strategically deployed," he added.

Irish Independent

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