A Florida fire rescue paramedic was fired and three others were suspended without pay Wednesday after a review of a July 4 incident detailed their failure to transport or check the vital signs of a woman who had stroke symptoms days after giving birth, the Tampa Bay Times reported.
Investigators said the first responders in Hillsborough County failed to properly assess the condition of Crystle Galloway, 30, who had given birth via cesarean section a few days before the incident, WTSP reported.
Instead of being transported to a hospital by an ambulance, Galloway was driven by her mother to Brandon Regional Hospital and then airlifted to Tampa General Hospital, where she died, the Times reported.
Lt. John "Mike" Morris, 36, who has worked with the Hillsborough County Fire Rescue department for six years, was fired, the Times reported.
Acting Lt. Cortney Barton was suspended for 30 days without pay and was banned from serving in an acting lieutenant capacity for one year, the newspaper reported. Fire Medic Justin Sweeney was been demoted to Firefighter/EMT. He also was suspended without pay for 30 days, along with fire medic Andrew J. Martin.
The four paramedics had responded to a 911 call on July 4 placed by Galloway’s mother, Nicole Black, the Times reported.
According to Hillsborough County documents used in the two-month review, the four paramedics never asked why a trip to the hospital was necessary, WTSP reported.
Galloway had passed out, had a swollen lip and was drooling, the Times reported. Dispatchers submitted a code that should have alerted paramedics that Galloway was possibly suffering a stroke, the newspaper reported.
The paramedics also failed to get the mother or Galloway to sign an informed consent form as required, according to records from Hillsborough County.
"I cannot trust these individuals to work under my medical license," Michael Lozano, Fire Rescue medical director, wrote in a statement. "I feel they do not meet the minimum standards set by myself and the department."
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