A young mum has recalled the harrowing night her husband almost bled to death waiting for an ambulance following a freak accident at home.
Tradie Elliott Shaw, 30, severed his left hand, two arteries, 11 tendons and two nerves at his Alexandra Hills home, south of Brisbane, a fortnight ago.
Mr Shaw suffered the gruesome injuries after he tripped over his baby daughter’s bouncer and fell through a window.
The father-of-two may not be alive today if it wasn’t for the quick thinking of his neighbour, a retired paramedic who drove him to hospital when the triple-0 operator couldn’t advise Mr Shaw’s wife Sarah when the ambulance would arrive.
Ms Shaw has spoken out about her husband’s life-changing ordeal after the family was let down by emergency services, prompting a grovelling apology from Queensland Ambulance.
She claims the triple-0 operator hung up on a call after her neighbour, who has 35 experience as a paramedic informed them that the incident was a ‘code one’, which required lights and sirens.
‘The second call my neighbour explained who he was and alerted the operator that this was a code one and he was bleeding out,’ Mrs Shaw recalled.
‘This operator proceeded to say ‘ you cannot speak to me like that. If there is anything else call back. She then hung up on us.’
Elliott Shaw (pictured with his family) is recovering at home after he almost bled to death
She and the neighbour were forced to use two belts and a phone charger cord as tourniquets as Mr Shaw bled profusely on the kitchen floor.
After 20 minutes and three frantic calls to triple-0 including the ‘code one’, the neighbour drove a rapidly deteriorating Mr Shaw to the nearest hospital in Redlands, which was 10 minutes away.
Mr Shaw was later transferred under lights and sirens to Princess Alexandra Hospital to undergo emergency surgery.
He hadn’t had any blood supply to his arm and hand for two hours at that stage.
Mr Shaw will never be able to use his hand to the same capacity again.
‘My husband was dying and our neighbour saved him. Not the people we rely on,’ Ms Shaw revealed in a harrowing public Facebook plea.
‘My five-month old and 3-year-old almost grew up not knowing their dad.
‘He is alive but our lives will never be the same.’
Mr Shaw is now recovering at home as his wife fought back tears recalling how close she came to losing him.
‘Triple 000 said they were on their way lights and sirens but couldn’t give me a ETA she,’ told Nine News.
‘Thank God we made the right decision that we had to go as had we listened to that advice, my husband wouldn’t be alive.’
Elliott Shaw was rushed to hospital by his neighbour and later underwent lifesaving surgery
Two Queensland Ambulance district directors met with the couple on Monday to apologise for the delay and vowed to work with the family on their concerns.
The ambulance service says it experienced pressure across south-east Queensland on the night of the incident.
‘An ambulance was attached and proceeding lights and sirens to the scene. The QAS apologises to the patient and his family for the delay they experienced,’ a spokesperson told Daily Mail Australia.
‘In this case the patient chose to privately transport to hospital prior to QAS arrival.
‘The QAS utilises well-established systems to support its planning, management and deployment of resources to ensure our most critical patients are seen first.’
Elliott Shaw (pictured in hospital) will never be able to use his hand to the same capacity again
Queensland Health minister Shannon Fentiman agreed the ambulance response that night was ‘absolutely not good enough.’
‘I offer my sincere apology to the family, I cannot begin to imagine the distress this incident would have caused,’ she said.
‘I want to thank the neighbour, a retired paramedic, for offering incredible care.
‘I also want to thank the hardworking healthcare workers at the local hospitals for tending to this patient and providing him with the exceptional care to ensure he would make a full recovery.
‘Our paramedics do a great job every day caring for Queenslanders, but in this case, it was absolutely not good enough.’
Elliott almost bled to death while waiting for an ambulance after tripping over his baby’s bouncer at home