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Families call for public inquiry into North East Ambulance Service accused of “cover-ups” in fatal incidents

Tracey Beadle’s daughter Quinn, 17, died in 2018 when a paramedic failed to follow guidelines and months later her 21-year-old son, Dyllon, took his life.

Mrs Beadle, from County Durham, said she held the ambulance trust responsible for their deaths.

Her daughter’s death was probed by a government-ordered independent review.

Mrs Beadle said her family had been treated “abhorrently” by the trust.

“We lost our daughter in 2018 and then 10 months later we also lost our son Dyllon after he read the first review done by an independent solicitor into what happened on the night Quinn died,” she said.

“He said it was haunting him and a few days later he took his own life.

“We hold the trust partially responsible for Dyllon’s death as well.”

Paramedic Gavin Wood was struck off at a misconduct hearing in January for failing to give appropriate life support to Quinn Milburn-Beadle when he was called to attend her suicide in December 2018.

A tribunal heard he failed to follow guidelines for providing life support and stopped giving her CPR.

The review, published earlier, found details about accounts from those attending as part of an investigation, had been removed and amended and there were delays in getting information to the coroner.

The family was not made aware of any concerns about Quinn’s care until days before the inquest in April 2019.

NEAS chief executive Helen Ray said she had written to families with an “unreserved apology” after the review found the service had changed “a serious incident into an incident needing lesser scrutiny” by providing the coroner with “confusing / conflated material” rather than original material.

The deaths of the teenager and three other people which were raised by a whistleblower last year and were the subject of the review, which made 15 recommendations.

Maria Caulfield, minister for mental health and women’s health, said her thoughts were with the families affected.

Ms Caulfield said: “I welcome the Trust’s apology to those affected, acceptance of the report’s recommendations and action to start implementing them.

“We will continue working with the Trust and NHS England to ensure that lessons are learnt on improving patient safety across the country.”

But Mrs Beadle said she did not think the latest review was “independent” being carried out by Dame Marianne Griffiths, a former NHS chief executive, reporting on the NEAS, another NHS Trust.

She has called for a public inquiry.

“How can it be called independent? It’s the NHS looking into the NHS, we won’t be happy until we get a full public inquiry,” she said.

“We’ve been treated abhorrently, they [NEAS} covered up the mistakes made by the paramedic.

“Had they held their hands up straight away and apologised and done things to put things right, I don’t think we would’ve lost our son and be here five years down the line fighting for our children.

“We feel an apology is too little, too late.”

(Source: BBC)

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