HALIFAX, Nova Scotia — The authority in charge of ambulance and paramedic services in Maine has cleared a paramedic and an emergency medical technician of wrongdoing in the emergency care a Nova Scotia man received after a skiing accident at Sugarloaf resort.
"This doesn’t conclude the investigation; it only takes action with regard to these two people," Jay Bradshaw, director of Maine Emergency Medical Services, said.
David Morse, 41, of Harmony, died Jan. 12 in an ambulance on his way to Franklin Memorial Hospital in Farmington, Maine. He sustained chest injuries after losing control on his skis while skiing and hitting a tree at Sugarloaf in Carrabassett Valley.
Maine Emergency Medical Services is continuing its formal investigation into the actions of other NorthStar Ambulance personnel in connection to the case, Bradshaw said Monday.
The two workers cleared in the investigation last week were not involved in Morse’s care.
"Those two providers were people who were listed on the run report but really didn’t even arrive on the scene until the end of the call. They did not participate in patient care at all," Bradshaw said. "They were called for assistance but by the time they got to the ambulance the call had ended. . . . Care had been terminated."
Bradshaw said he could not provide further details and said he is not at liberty to say how many personnel are being investigated.
"I can’t go into the details of the investigation, other than to let you know this doesn’t conclude the investigation."
Morse’s widow, Dana, a nurse practitioner, has alleged her husband received inadequate treatment from paramedics and that the ambulance driver left her on the side of the road on the way to the hospital after she asked him to pull over so she could move into the back with her husband.
She later drove to Franklin Memorial Hospital to learn that medical personnel there had no information about her husband or the mishap. She discovered that the ambulance had driven her husband back to the medical clinic at the ski resort.
Morse died of chest trauma, according to the Office of Medical Examiner in Augusta, Maine. His death has been ruled accidental.
Bradshaw could not say when the agency is expected to complete is investigation.
"The details of the investigation are confidential by statute until action has been taken (and a) decision has been made.
"At that point, some of the information will become public."
Franklin Memorial Hospital, which operates NorthStar Ambulance, is carrying out its own investigation into the events of Jan. 12.
"The investigation is ongoing. We are waiting for (Maine Emergency Medical Services) to conclude their investigation, then we’ll make a comment," Jill Gray, a hospital spokeswoman, said Monday.
The ambulance personnel who responded to the call that day are still on staff, she said.