Misconduct hearing for paramedic Gavin Wood over death of Quinn Beadle

A paramedic believes one of her colleagues failed a teenager by telling police to stop CPR after the 17-year-old was found by a dog walker.

A formal hearing heard how emergency services were called after Quinn Milburn-Beadle was discovered in a wooded area not far from her home in Shildon, County Durham.

Two police officers were trying to resuscitate her when Gavin Wood, a paramedic with over 20 years experience, arrived in a rapid response vehicle.

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A Conduct and Competence Committee of the Health and Care Professions Tribunal Service heard he made the decision to stop life support and pronounced her dead.

Another North East Ambulance Service paramedic, who is referred to as Colleague A, told the hearing the first police officer at the scene had told her they were not far away when the alarm was raised on December 9, 2018.

She said: “They were just a few minutes away and the (the police officer) had been the one who started performing CPR as per their protocol.

“He told me that he thought he felt a pulse but she wasn’t breathing, which is why he started the CPR.

“There was bystander CPR and from he was saying he had been doing good quality CPR so that raised an alarm.”

Colleague A said another paramedic told her Quinn was still warm, even though it was a cold December night, and she had been pronounced dead without further attempts at life-support.

She said the police officer at the scene had also raised concern with her.

Colleague A said: “He said that the registrant (Gavin Wood) had not even attached any machines to service user A. (Quinn)

“He recalls that the registrant just checked her pupils and said: ‘leave it mate, she is gone’.

“As far as I recall the clothing was intact and CPR was ongoing. The first thing I would have done is cut her top off and put pads on.

“Evidence suggests that early defibrillation has the most successful outcome.

“I would have literally taken scissors and cut her clothing off. I would have expected to see that done.”

The Northern Echo: Quinn BeadleQuinn Beadle (Image: Contributor)

The hearing was told Mr Wood cancelled the air ambulance and Colleague A said she believed he had not attempted to use a defibrillator.

The tribunal, which began on Monday, aims to identify whether Mr Wood’s fitness to practise was impaired by reason of misconduct and/or a health condition.

She said: “Me and my colleague then went down to service user A to obtain a rhythm strip for an ECG.

“It was only on talking to the police office down there when I started to question exactly what had happened and I was not happy with what had been done, or not done, for service user A.

“That is when me and my colleague had a thorough discussion about how we would have dealt with that particular case.

“We both felt that the registrant’s actions were distinctly lacking and that he had failed service user A.

“That did not sit comfortably with either me or my colleague so we then raised our concerns with a manager.”

Alan Potts, who carried out an investigation on behalf of the NEAS, told the hearing how the report did not support the decision-making which Mr Wood subsequently made.

He told the hearing the Recognition of Life Extinct decision was made within a few minutes, despite the ongoing act of resuscitation.

The tribunal, which is being held virtually, heard no effort was made to clear Quinn’s airway and that the investigation to discover whether her pulse had been checked was “inconclusive”.

He is accused of not following North East Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust guidance and/or Joint Royal Colleges Ambulance Liaison Committee Guidelines by:

  • Giving advice to Police Officer 1 and/or Police Officer 2 to cease cardiopulmonary resuscitation
  • Not undertaking a 30 second electrocardiogram examination of Service User A prior to declaring recognition of life extinct
  • Not commencing cardiopulmonary resuscitation
  • Not assessing her airway
  • Not ventilating her lungs by using a bag-valve-mask with supplemental oxygen
  • Not applying an automated external defibrillator (AED)
  • Not attempting to gain and/or did not gain intravenous access report
  • Not administering adrenaline
  • Not continuing resuscitation efforts for a minimum period of 20 minutes

Mr Wood is also accused of the following on December 9, 2018:

  • Stating to two colleagues that an electrocardiogram had indicated the teenager was asystolic [had no heart beat] when he had not undertaken an electrocardiogram examination
  • Stating to two colleagues that he had checked her femoral pulse when this was not the case
  • Stating to two colleagues that he had undertaken a 30 second electrocardiogram examination prior to declaring recognition of life extinct when this was not the case
  • Not saving defibrillator data to the Cloud and/or to the electronic patient care report; and/or stating to two colleagues that the Zoll Defibrillator was unable to print when this was not the case
  • Posting on Facebook in breach of the North East Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust Social Media Policy including a comment to the effect that his reputation had been “ruined” by a press release

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Mr Wood, who has not attended the hearing, is accused of being dishonest in relation to his conduct.

He is also accused of misconduct.

The tribunal, expected to last until January 20, continues.

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