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"Refused ambulance"

About: King's College Hospital (Denmark Hill) / Neurology South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust / Emergency ambulance The Maidstone Hospital / Accident and emergency

(as the patient),

I came over very suddenly with a severe headache and couldn’t move my neck. I then started to be violently sick. My husband called 999 but within only a couple of questions said I was not a priority and should be taken to hospital by a family member. Luckily my daughter was able to drive while my husband sat with me.

On arriving at the hospital and collapsing in the toilets I was eventually seen in majors where after having a ct scan was told I’d had a brain hemorrhage and needed to be blue lit to kings college. I eventually got there and had 6 hours of open brain surgery to save my life. I feel like I am very lucky to still be here to tell the tale but am disgusted that I was refused an ambulance and had to put my family through all the added stress.


Response from Graham Parrish, Patient Experience Manager, South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust

I was very sorry to read of your experience and do hope that you are recovering from your ordeal, it must have been a very worrying time for you and your family and I am sorry that this was added to by an ambulance not being sent to you.

I would like to investigate and respond formally to your experience and wonder if you would email confirming the date and time you called 999 and the address that you requested an ambulance to be sent to.

Once I have these details I will arrange for a full investigation to be carried out and a response sent to you.

Please accept my sincere apologies that you have had to raise concerns and I wish you well for a full and speedy recovery.


Graham Parrish

Patient Experience Manager

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Response from King's College Hospital (Denmark Hill)

I believe that Graham Parrish has replied to your post on Patient Opinion.

How terribly worrying for you.

I am very pleased indeed to hear that your surgery was successful and wish you all the best for your recovery.

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Response from The Maidstone Hospital

Thank you for taking the time to leave feedback on your experience earlier this year.

We're sorry to read that you had difficulty in obtaining an ambulance, but unfortunately, this service is not managed by the hospital Trust.

South East Coast Ambulance can be contacted at

We hope this information is helpful.

Kind regards, The MTW PALS Team.

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