An inquest has heard how a resident died on his way to hospital after choking on his Sunday lunch. John Collie, 82, died in an ambulance March this year.
An inquest at Eastbourne Town Hall heard Mr Collie was staying at Camelot Rest Home on Darley Road when he started coughing and vomiting an hour after eating a roast dinner at midday.
Mr Collie had a number of underlying health conditions but according to his GP, Dr Iftikhar Ahmed, he was doing ‘reasonably well’ when he last saw him in January this year.
Sarah Spratt, Mr Collie’s daughter, said, “He was very well looked after at the care home. His dementia was getting worse but he talked to everyone and lived a very full life.”
Care home manager Manuela Castelli said he started coughing and vomiting about an hour after eating and became breathless over time. 999 was called and he was transferred to the ambulance.
Emily Lewis, one of the attending paramedics, said he presented with chest pains and it was agreed they would do more tests in the hospital.
However he went into cardiac arrest in the ambulance, and it was then that they could see he had a piece of meat stuck in his throat.
An A&E report from Dr Salim Shubber said Mr Collie had a coughing fit and went into respiratory arrest before having a cardiac arrest. He was assessed in the emergency department but pronounced dead at 4.30pm.
The inquest heard his death was due to acute asphyxia and aspirated food.
East Sussex coroner James Healy-Pratt came to a narrative conclusion.
He said, “Mr Collie was choking on food and he was not reasonably able to be assisted as it was not visible to staff or ambulance crew despite their best efforts.
“Sadly he deteriorated and that’s when the crew could recognise something in his throat. The ambulance crew did what they were supposed to do, it is all rather tragic.”