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Are paramedics to blame for pregnant woman's death?

People are expected to pull to the side of the road when an emergency vehicle passes by. That's because mere minutes can be the difference between life and death. If New York City residents have the misfortune of being in an ambulance, they expect that emergency responders will get them the care they need in a timely manner. Sadly, that does not always happen.

A 24-year-old pregnant woman died recently in the back of an ambulance. Her family says she would still be alive if paramedics had acted more swiftly and provided her with the proper care and treatment.

The 24-year-old woman had asthma and was taking medication for blood clots. She fell down the stairs and began having trouble breathing. A family member called for help.

Paramedics arrived within three minutes of the call. However, eight minutes passed before they brought the woman out of the home. In that time, the woman was not given oxygen. After she was placed in the ambulance, another seven minutes passed before paramedics departed for a nearby hospital.

Upon arrival at the hospital, paramedics were unable to open the doors to the ambulance. Although a doctor attempted to work on the young woman, she died in the ambulance before getting inside the hospital.

Stories like this are disturbing. People in New York City and beyond rely on emergency responders and medical professionals to help them when they are most in need. When a medical professional fails to provide appropriate care and treatment, they should be held responsible. In situations like this, surviving family members may find that a medical malpractice lawsuit is appropriate.

Source: NBC News, "Pregnant Woman Dies, Family Blames Medics," Marisa Brahney and Lauren DiSanto, Oct. 2, 2012

Our firm works with victims of medical malpractice. For more information, please visit our New York City medical malpractice page.

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