EMT fired after refusing to help dying baby

DETROIT (KRON) — The Detroit Fire Commissioner said he has fired an emergency medical technician who refused to give a dying baby CPR.

On May 30, an EMT crew was dispatched to a home where an 8-month-old baby girl had stopped breathing. The infant was born premature and had been using a oxygen machine.

Ann Marie Thomas was about two minutes away from the residence when she received the call. Thomas and her partner parked their ambulance around the corner from the baby’s home and waited six minutes before telling dispatchers she didn’t want to go, according to an internal investigations report.

“I’m not about to be on no scene 10 minutes doing CPR, you know how these families get,” Thomas said.

The baby’s mother was reported to have given her child CPR for several minutes before help arrived. Another ambulance transported the baby girl to Sinai-Grace Hospital but the infant died the next morning.

According to the internal investigation report, Thomas, the driver of the ambulance, admitted that the decision to not “go in position was hers and hers alone.” Thomas’ partner, a junior EMT, indicated that she was never concerned for her safety and that she would have made the scene without a problem, the report said.

“The actions of EMT Thomas directly contributed to an approximately 19 minute response time (from time of call to Romeo 33 making the scene) for a baby not breathing,” the report said.

Detroit news station WDIV-TV reported Detroit Fire Commissioner Edsel Jenkins said that he had determined firing Jenkins was “the appropriate course of action.”

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