Ambulances & Vehicle Ops, Cardiac & Resuscitation, News

Family Questions DC EMS Delay

WASHINGTON – The family of four-month-old Anayah Holmes is asking why it took so long to get medical help for her. The infant stopped breathing Tuesday evening. Her brother ran out to flag down a police officer who radioed for help and began CPR.

Juggling more than 40 calls at a time, a spokesman for the D.C. Fire Department says the closest available medical transport unit was eight miles away. That unit was stuck in holiday traffic, so a fire truck with a paramedic on board responded.

The paramedic performed advanced life support treatment and when the ambulance hadn’t arrived, the baby was taken to the hospital in the fire truck.

The baby was pronounced dead at the hospital.

It is unclear how long the baby was not breathing before the call for help. The fire department says a peer review shows its workers used good judgment and took the appropriate action.