An Australian footballer was left sitting in pain with a broken leg after paramedics from Ambulance Victoria, fearing for their safety, were forced to delay treatment.
Melton South footballer Daniel Vasjuta sustained a fractured fibula and dislocated ankle minutes into the third quarter of the Ballarat Football League senior match.
The emergency call was received at 3.47p.m., and with emergency demand high at the time, the Ambulance Victoria two-person crew arrived at 4.36p.m.
The Age News reports Ambulance Victoria executive director for emergency operations Mick Stephenson said the crew — a man and a woman — activated their duress alarm soon after.
Stephenson tells The Age News paramedics were verbally assaulted both on scene and in Ambulance Victoria’s communications center.
A second ambulance crew returned to the scene under police escort and Vasjuta was taken to hospital in a stable condition about 6.20p.m.
“Paramedics need to treat patients in an environment where they are safe, Stephenson tells The Age News. There is no excuse for intimidation toward paramedics who had gone to care for an injured man. The behavior of these people had unnecessarily delayed the patient’s medical treatment.”
Melton South Football Club president Brendan Morrissey disputes the paramedics’ claim.
The Age News reports Morrissey told The Ballarat Courier that one person, believed to be homeless, had yelled at the paramedics and the crew was offered assistance when they expressed concerns. He also said he was disappointed paramedics had chosen to leave without treating the Vasjuta.
Amanda Mills is defending the paramedics.
“Easy to blame ambos,” she wrote in a post on social media.
“Those ambos have mothers who want to see them come home without broken legs too!”
The Ballarat Football Netball League tells The Age News it is investigating the matter and would not comment further until inquiries were complete.
Ambulance Victoria is also investigating the incident, according to The Age News.
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