I-TEAM: City investigating after Cleveland baby dies, ambulance sent to wrong house

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CLEVELAND (WJW) — The FOX 8 I-Team has found a Cleveland ambulance sent to the wrong address after a 911 call for a medical emergency with a baby.

A dispatcher sent an ambulance to the wrong place miles away. The child died days later. Now city hall is investigating, and the I-Team is asking questions, too.

The call came in earlier this month from the city’s east side.

On the recording, you hear a man say, “I need an ambulance at 102 — Kempton. My son is not breathing.”

But an ambulance did not go immediately to the home of little Jha-Syah. Records show an EMS unit was first sent to an address nearly 5 miles away.

The baby died in the hospital days later, and now his grandmother wonders about the delay getting help.

Ernestine Bell said, “It hits me hard because maybe it made a difference in the response for the baby.”

A report shows an ambulance was sent to East 102nd and Kinsman instead of E. 102nd and Kempton.

A dispatcher tried talking the family through helping the baby until paramedics arrived. But after nearly 6 minutes, the dispatcher asked, “Does anybody see the paramedics?”

A woman responded with, “No I don’t see anything.”

So, the dispatcher asked “Did you tell me 102—Kinsman?”

The woman then responded, “Kempton. Kempton!”

At that point, dispatch sent a different ambulance to the call. A crew much closer.

But, consider the timeline. A report shows an ambulance got to the first address, the wrong address, in just four minutes. Paramedics got to the baby eight minutes after the call to 911.

Ernestine Bell admits she doesn’t know how much it hurt the child having a delay of even a few minutes. But she considers every second precious in an emergency with an infant.

“A minute is too long. A half a minute is too long. That’s the question. Why? Why so long? Why this miscommunication?” she asked

The I-Team contacted Cleveland EMS. City Hall released a statement, saying: “We are aware of this incident and take this matter very seriously. We are currently investigating the incident and we will address and correct any deficiencies that are found.”

The Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner is investigating the cause of death of the baby.

We’ll follow up on the confusion after the call for help and report back the findings of the investigations.

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