A PARAMEDIC from Ryedale who refused to attend an emergency call because he had already worked for six hours has been struck off.

A disciplinary hearing convened by the Health Professions Council was told the actions of Brian Mortimer on November 11 last year caused a six-minute delay in an ambulance reaching a patient requiring treatment.

Colleague Andrew Wing, who was also involved in the incident, has since apologised and was handed a three-year caution.

In a decision just published, the Health Professions Council panel said Mr Mortimer and Mr Wing were on duty operating out of the service’s Malton station.

The panel said: “They started their shift at approximately 6am. In the ordinary course of events, they would have been entitled to a break after being on duty for six hours.”

However, this was “not an absolute right and if an emergency call was received at a time when they would otherwise be taking their break, they could be required to answer that call”.

The decision continued: “An emergency call was received at approximately 12.14pm, about 14 minutes into what would have been the break period.

“At this point Mr Mortimer was driving the vehicle back to the station and Mr Wing was acting as attendant”.

Mr Wing was said to have queried whether they should be sent given that they had been working for more than six hours, and to have told the control officer: “Can I just clarify, I think you’ll find we aren’t actually available due to the six hours rule.”

According to the findings, another official then spoke to Mr Mortimer who replied: “I refuse to do this job,” telling the official they were going back to the station for their meal break.

A single paramedic in a rapid response vehicle had already been sent to the patient and an alternative ambulance from a different location was sent six minutes later.

On Mr Mortimer, the panel said: “He was not entitled to put his need of a break over the needs of a patient who was the subject of an emergency call.

“In doing so, we are satisfied both failed to respond to an emergency call and that this failure caused a six-minute delay in an ambulance being sent to the patient.”

The findings said personal difficulties Mr Wing was experiencing at the time went some way towards explaining what happened but did not excuse it.

The panel concluded Mr Mortimer had taken the leading role in the incident.

They added that Mr Mortimer “has not done anything to show remorse, to show that he has accepted his misconduct, or that he is willing or able to address his failing on this occasion”.

Yorkshire Ambulance Service said neither man had worked for the service since soon after the incident.