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How to get to hospital to have your baby if you don’t have a car

By johnboy - 6 August 2006 26

The Canberra Times had a front page splash today on a sad story involving a pregnant woman who called the hospital when her time came only to be told to get a taxi in to the hospital, and the taxi then never came.

Her heart stopped from blood loss and she had to be resuscitated when an ambulance was finally sent out to her.

So, should the monopoly taxi service be required to provide better quality of service? Or should the ambulance be consistently used in these situations.

What’s Your opinion?

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26 Responses to
How to get to hospital to have your baby if you don’t have a car
S4anta 1:53 pm 07 Aug 06

chocolate teapot. hee hee

VYBerlinaV8 1:30 pm 07 Aug 06

As sad as this is, I really think people need to take a little more responsibility. If your missus is in labour (and yes, my wife has been), you would be doing whatever you could to get to the hospital. This includes, friends, taxis, ambos, and ringing the hospital back to ask for more assistance.
That being said, cabs in this town are about as reliable as a chocolate teapot.

Al 1:28 pm 07 Aug 06

I saw the Canberra Times banner outside a newsagent yesterday:
“Woman survives horror ordeal taxi birth”
Thought to myself “well done – giving birth to a taxi must have hurt…”

Absent Diane 11:47 am 07 Aug 06

i blame john stanhope’s grandstanding on non-local issues and lack of focus on ACT health in particular sex education.

Big Al 11:39 am 07 Aug 06

Is the an angle that lays the blame on Simon Corbell – come on people, you’re not trying hard enough!

seepi 11:17 am 07 Aug 06

So many stuff ups here. the hospital must ahve thought the mother was just panicking nad not really in labour, tus suggesting a taxi. the taxi service is at fault – they should have said they weren’t coming, instead of constantly promising they were on their way. And the couple should have called the ambulance a little earlier, instead of waiting til she started bleeding. But this is all easy to say in hindsight. I think Canberra Cabs should pull out of this stupid voice recognition software, and phase it back in more slowly.

emd 10:58 am 07 Aug 06

I can’t believe the hospital even suggested a taxi. At 10 weeks prem, that’s a high risk of baby and/or mother not surviving.

Thumper 10:41 am 07 Aug 06

Surely as soon as she was bleeding heavily, they must have realised it was time for an ambulance, and not a taxi?

Sheer stupidity from the people involved. However, the taxi company has done itself no favours by not even turning up.

Sammy 10:19 am 07 Aug 06

Why the bloody hell wouldn’t you call an ambulance in this situation? Did they call an ambulance? Is this not an emergency situation? So many questions.

Absent Diane 10:13 am 07 Aug 06

there is no way that you can rely on a taxi service… they have no service level agreements with you – its a best effort thing.

If I was in that situation… I would be ringing friends frantically.

btw – I hate the new Taxi phone system (IVR??)

bonfire 9:52 am 07 Aug 06

stupid couple should have driven themselves or called an ambulance. as much as i detest monopolists, you cant lay blame on the cab company here.

perfect example of bogan idiots blaming someone else for their own stupidity.

i bet this makes it to naomi tonight.

simto 8:58 am 07 Aug 06

The ambo service definately should not be saying “oh, call a taxi”. So they’re stuffed.

Then again, the taxi service also should have shown up.

So everybody’s shit in this one! Except for the poor preggers woman, who’s been shafted twice (well, presumably three times, hence why she’s pregnant).

jube 8:10 am 07 Aug 06

Having worked as a taxi driver and also in the base as a dispatcher/supervisor, it is the common practice of telephonists to advise someone in a medical emergency situation to call an ambulance, purely (as was stated in the article) because taxis are not there to provide that kind of service. It also states that they spoke to the auto booking service in the article, therefore there was no opportunity to advise them of this on at least the first call – there is an option of specifying special needs at the end of the message that will take you to an operator.

This part may be idle speculation, but in my experience MOST (not all) of the times when a taxi “didn’t show up” the taxi did, obeyed the RTA and Canb Cabs rule of not beeping their horn and no-one has come out of the house. Cab drivers are also under no obligation to leave their car due to previous instances of robbery in unattended cabs in driveways…

I am not defending the cab service (Mark Bramston recently fired me for allegedly putting down their new system during a phone call at work) but I think the blame in this case goes to the idiot at the hospital who advised them this way in the first instance – as it also states in the article, it is not common practice at the hospital to tell them to catch a cab.

nyssa76 11:37 pm 06 Aug 06

The taxi company should have told the couple that they couldn’t transport a woman in labour for medical reasons and told them to call the ambo. God knows the ambo would have been there on time.

However, for Canberra Cabs to lay blame on the couple is BS. They had the opportunity at least twice to say “call an ambulance”.

When you’re in premature labour you tend not to think logically, particularly when your partner is bleeding heavily and you’re waiting on transportation that never came.

Ok, rant over.

ant 10:12 pm 06 Aug 06

I’ve heard quite a few first-hand accounts of taxis never arriving. Definitely time to review their arrangement.

another funny thing. the Canberra taxis are pretty aggressive drivers (I drive the airport routes every day), but sometimes you see a taxi not tailgating, not being pushy, not blasting through crowded situations… and then you see it’s a Queanbeyan taxi. Time to let them into the market perhaps?

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