A Tampa Bay woman claims that her 30-year-old daughter died from a medical emergency after medics told her she could not afford an ambulance.
Nicole Black told local ABC-affiliate WFTS that she called 911 on July 4 after she found her daughter “kind of responsive” in the bathroom, “lips swollen, drooling from the mouth.”
Four medics arrived to the scene, but Black says they told her she couldn’t afford to pay for an ambulance, forcing her to drive her daughter to a regional hospital herself.
“They never asked us if we had insurance, which we do,” she told WFTS, saying that she felt discriminated against.
“They didn’t take any vitals, they didn’t take any blood pressure, they didn’t check her temperature,” Black said.
Hillsborough Country Administrator Mike Merrill said this week that the four medics have been suspended pending a disciplinary hearing, adding they did not follow protocol while responding to Black’s 911 call.
Black drove her daughter, Crystle Galloway, to Brandon Regional Hospital. Galloway was so sick she was then flown by helicopter to Tampa General Hospital where she later died, The Tampa Bay Times reported.
“I deeply regret that this has happened and clearly this is unacceptable,” Merrill said this week.
Merrill told reporters that the medics broke protocol by letting Black drive her daughter to the hospital without signing a consent form, and that they filled out paperwork incorrectly.
“The whole conversation as the EMS drivers put my child in my car was that was best for us because we couldn’t afford an ambulance,” Black said. “My daughter begged for her life, she begged!”
Galloway had given birth via c-section days earlier and was in a coma for days before she died at the hospital, WFTS reported.
“She passed away before her baby’s umbilical cord dropped off,” her mother said. “She’s 30 years old and just graduated from college, she had her whole life ahead of her.”