It’s hard to imagine why two paramedics tasked with the responsibility of saving lives, would stand by outside a post-acute-care facility citing “some COVID-19 law” as a reason for refusing to enter the center, while the cardiac arrest individual inside the facility slowly succumbs and dies.
Still, according to a Rialto Police Department report, that’s exactly what took place. At about 7:50 p.m. on the evening of November 11th, a Rialto police officer responded to an emergency call from the facility’s care staff. When the officer arrived on the scene, he saw two paramedics from the Rialto Fire Department standing outside the facility refusing to enter, citing some sort of COVID-19 law.
A video of the event was obtained by local affiliate FOX 11 from the body camera of the police officer. It clearly shows the paramedics wearing face masks while standing outside the facility near the open door, but refusing to enter to help the distressed patient.
My father always taught me that the true measure of a person is not how much wealth they have but rather how they treat those less fortunate than themselves. Paramedics in California let a man die from cardiac arrest blamed a covid law and wouldn’t take him in the hospital. SICK— RoberteLeeJr. (@Head420Richard) December 16, 2021
According to the written police report, “After a few moments, an unknown employee of the location yelled out to fire personnel ‘Please come help, he’s having cardiac arrest.”
The report continues, “Fire personnel responded by insisting the patient had to be brought outside the facility before they could provide any sort of treatment… due to an unspecified COVID-19 law.”
After about a minute, the unidentified officer went inside the facility, where he was immediately greeted by frantic hospital staff members begging him to do something.
“They are not going to come in,” the officer told the staff as he started to run to the room where the man was in cardiac arrest. “They’re saying it’s a state law that they cannot come in.”
The officer arrived at the room where a number of hospital staff were taking turns performing CPR and other life-saving measures, in hopes of saving the patient.
With the paramedics just down the narrow hallway outside the open door, the officer decided to move the heavy hospital bed (which couldn’t be easily rolled because it had no wheels) to where the paramedics were standing.
Pushing the steel framed bed away from the wall, the officer behind the bed and, with the help of a nurse, began pushing the bed out of the room towards the front entrance.
“You’re doing a great job. You’re doing a great job. Keep going,” the officer told the exhausted nurse as another staff member sat on the bed and continued CPR.
As the officer navigated the wheel-less bed through the hallways, they eventually came into view of the paramedics.
“Despite being in their line of sight, fire personnel still insisted on [redacted] being brought to them outside before they began life saving efforts and made no effort to assist me in getting [redacted] outside,” read the report.
After what seemed like an eternity, the drained officer and nurse finally got the critical conditioned individual outside the care facility. By now, several other emergency medical personnel had arrived to assist.
Unfortunately, the heroic effort by the care-facility staff and the police officer proved futile. Joseph Angulo, age 56, died while being transported to a local hospital.
Obviously, these paramedics need to be investigated as to why they refused to enter the care-facility, using what appears to be a bogus excuse regarding a COVID-19 law.
“It is difficult to watch the tape,” said Rialto Mayor Pro Tem Ed Scott. Rialto’s Acting Fire Chief Brain Park said in a statement that the two paramedics have been placed on leave, pending a 3rd party investigation. It’s not yet clear what type of punishment they would receive, if found negligent.