A Beijing-based Chinese man posted a letter on May 26 on a social platform to tell about his son’s death.
His 32-year-old son – named Song – died after 54 minutes of waiting for the first aid from the Shunyi District Emergency Center to arrive.
At 3:38 am, on May 11, Song called the Chinese emergency hotline 120 for urgent help due to his sudden chest tightness and chest pain. However, the 120 informed him that his residence in Shunyi District belongs to the control area. Therefore, they needed to report to the neighborhood committee first.
At 3:44, the 120 called to inform Song that the emergency personnel was putting on protective clothing and about to leave while contacting the receiving hospital.
At 4:03, the 120 informed him that Shunyi District Hospital had refused to accept patients due to anti-epidemic reasons. They were contacting District Women’s and Children’s Hospital instead. At the time, Song was getting more uncomfortable. He tried to go downstairs, waiting for the ambulance with his girlfriend.
About 20 minutes later, Song’s condition suddenly worsened. He fell to the ground, losing his consciousness. It’d been 43 minutes since he called for help.
At 4:32, the ambulance arrived the scene. It had been 54 minutes from Song’s first call for help. After the medical staff put Song into the ambulance, Song’s girlfriend said that they did not perform CPR or use a defibrillator to rescue Song.
At around 5, the ambulance arrived at the Shunyi District Hospital, located 5 kilometers away. After communicating with the ground personnel for a few minutes, the ambulance staff sent Song to the emergency room.
At around 7, the hospital declared Song’s death.
In the letter, the father said that based on road traffic at 4 and 5 in the morning, it only takes about 10 minutes to arrive at his son’s place. If the 120 center had dispatched emergency personnel on time (within 4 minutes), his son would have had enough time to safely arrive at Shunyi District Hospital.
The father blamed the Shunyi District Emergency Center and the Shunyi District Hospital for his son’s death.
When failing to find the receiving hospital for the first time, the Emergency Center neither sent personnel to give first aid nor guided his son to do self-help lifesaving techniques on the phone.
Shunyi District Hospital refused to admit his son because he was from the control area. They also failed to prepare for rescue in advance and dock with emergency vehicles in time.
He wrote that both departments had failed to accomplish their duties. Their actions had discredited the anti-epidemic work. And most importantly, the father has lost his only son.
The local government announced on May 27 that they would investigate the incident. The person in charge of the Shunyi First Aid Branch Center and relevant responsible persons have been suspended and investigated.
In the letter, the father urged everyone to pay attention to the progress of this incident. He hoped people would help and support him in seeking justice.