Dad died of heart attack as he sat in A&E waiting room for nine hours

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Dad died of heart attack as he sat in A&E waiting room for nine hours
Dad died of heart attack as he sat in A&E waiting room for nine hours. Image - digitalhealth.net

A father of two died of a heart attack after being left in an A&E waiting room for nine hours before he was seen by specialists.

A 48-year-old father of two has died of a heart attack after being left in an A&E waiting room for nine hours before he was seen by specialists, his wife says.

June Roche said she rushed her husband Jake to Queen’s Medical Centre in Nottingham in December 2021 after he had a flare-up during his recovery from a recent heart attack.

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Earlier that month Jake had gone to his GP after experiencing what he thought were panic attacks to be told he had actually had two “massive but silent heart attacks” as well as three strokes that had left him partially blind.

Jake was put on blood-thinning medication and sent home on December 9, however, he then started to feel “pain in his neck and chest” two days later.

Ms Roche took to Twitter about the ordeal, saying they had arrived at A&E at 10:30pm on December 11 but had not been seen by a heart attack specialist until 7:30am the next morning.


Writing in Central Bylines, she said: “He spent that Friday night in a rammed but eerily quiet A&E reception. He was cold, blind, alone, and clearly having heart attacks.”

“He sat in reception until 7.30 the next morning, when he was eventually transferred to the acute cardiology ward of another hospital.”

She claims that for most of the time her husband was in the A&E waiting room she was forced to wait in her car and had to tell the reception over the phone that he was suffering heart attacks.


She added: “There was only one nurse on the desk, I was concerned that she may not have initially grasped the seriousness of his situation.”

“At 3am, I persuaded the security guard to let me in, to give Jake his phone charger and a drink.”

“He looked shockingly pale and so very tired. He was freezing cold and in a lot of pain. I was about to kick up a fuss but Jake said not to. He pointed out there was only one doctor on duty and told me to look around.”

“There were some really sick people there, some laying on the floor and others with the ashen pallor to their faces that severe pain brings.”

“The nurse looked exhausted. The situation wasn’t her fault and she was doing her best – if I had kicked up a fuss it would have used up valuable energy that she needed to devote to these patients.”

Mr Roche, who did not have Covid, fought for his life for another 36 hours in the acute cardiology ward before his condition deteriorated. Doctors then rushed him into intensive care where he later died.

Ms Roche added: “Maybe Jake wouldn’t have survived, whatever was done. But the long wait, the pain and the fatigue he endured in A&E simply cannot have helped him.”

Her terrifying account has sparked an outpour of concern on social media amid claims that the NHS is experiencing staffing issues.

Oxford-based NHS palliative care doctor who has campaigned against Conservative health policies, Rachel Clarke, said: “I defy anyone to read her devastating account of his last hours & claim the NHS isn’t overwhelmed & sinking.”


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Laura is from a small seaside town in North Wales and has also lived in Liverpool and Manchester, where she studied English Literature and worked in social media and marketing. Laura moved to the city of Zaragoza last August to teach English, but after missing the coast she decided to move to beautiful Nerja to enjoy the sun and sea. Laura has a passion for animals, films, outdoor activities, writing and the environment.

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