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911 medics who never took vitals of dying daughter suspended. I'm 'dumbfounded,' city administrator says

911 medics who never took vitals of dying daughter suspended. I'm 'dumbfounded,' city administrator says

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Four medics who responded to a 911 call earlier this month have been suspended after an investigation revealed they never took the patient's vital signs or transported her to the hospital. 

At around 3 a.m. July 4, a mother in Tampa, Florida, called 911 after finding her daughter, Crystle Galloway, 30, passed out in her bathroom. Galloway had a swollen lip and was drooling from her mouth, according to county documents.

Her mother told first responders that Galloway gave birth by caesarean section (C-section) a few days earlier. 

Two sheriff's deputies and four medics from Hillsborough County arrived at the home. What happened next has county administrator Mike Merrill "dumbfounded," he said in a press conference.

None of the medics checked Galloway's vital signs, a "common sense" violation of standard operating procedure, Merrill said. They also allowed Galloway's mother to take her daughter to the hospital without a clear consensus. Citing interviews with the medics conducted after the incident, Merrill said there was some confusion about informed consent over transportation. 

More: Man cited for calling 911 six times in a row; there was no emergency

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Galloway's mother, Nicole Black, said she believes the medics were concerned she couldn't cover emergency costs, and they persuaded her to drive her daughter to a hospital herself. 

“Instead of you doing the vitals, you were convincing me that it would be better for me to take her,” Black said. She said medics were "begging" her to take the woman to the hospital for nearly 12 minutes, meanwhile, her daughter was in distress, "in the fetal position."

Lastly, Merrill said the medics filled out a post-call report claiming the patient could not be found, a falsification of records. 

The fire rescue's human resources department was made aware of concerns about the request for medical assistance on July 11, according to county documents. 

Lt. John “Mike” Morris, 36; Fire Medic Justin Sweeney, 36; Fire Medic Andrew J. Martin, 28; and Acting Lt. Cortney Barton, 38, were placed on paid administrative leave Friday.

"We did in fact fail to provide good care to this woman," Merrill said. 

The workers' employment status will be decided at a hearing on Tuesday by Merrill. 

 

WTSP-TV contributed to this report. Follow Ashley May on Twitter: @AshleyMayTweets

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