Female medic attacked responding to 999 call
Published 15/09/2007 | 09:37
A paramedic is recovering after being attacked while treating a patient during an emergency call out.
The medic, who is in her 30's, suffered a nose injury during the frightening incident as she treated a patient at Lenadoon, West Belfast, on Thursday night.
It is understood doctors are waiting for swelling to go down in order to establish if her nose is broken.
Brian McNeill, Director of Operations with the Northern Ireland Ambulance Service, said that such attacks on medical staff could have fatal consequences.
He added: "This member of staff may now be unavailable for duty for a period of time whilst she recovers from this traumatic experience.
"As far as the community is concerned, the cover for that area, which is one of the busiest for us in Northern Ireland, was depleted between the hours of 3am and 8am.
"The potential impact of such actions, and the subsequent depletion of cover, is that response to life threatening call may be delayed with fatal consequences - someone might actually die, due entirely to the actions of people who assault ambulance crews."
The ambulance chief called for an end to attacks.
He added: "It is time for these attacks to stop. It is time for parents to educate children of all ages that such attacks are totally unacceptable.
"It is time for individuals and groups of individuals to ask themselves if they think that such behaviour should be tolerated."
The latest incident follows similar attacks on a female medic in Lurgan and a male medical worker in north Belfast last month.