STATter911.com has confirmed with DC Fire & EMS Department sources that no pre-hospital care report was filed in the initial response to assist a little girl with trouble breathing. That incident is now under review as the department tries to determine why the child, who died the next day, was not transported to a hospital when her mother first called 911. With no report, that also means there is no signed release from the family of Stephanie Stephens indicating a family member or guardian declined to have the girl taken to a hospital.
According to the department sources, who are not authorized to speak on this incident, the review will also look at the family’s claim that the medic told the mother to use steam from a hot shower to help open up her daughter’s lungs.
As 9NEWS NOW first reported on Wednesday, the toddler’s family is publicly asking why the medic crew did not take the two-year-old girl to the hospital after the initial emergency call was placed.
Stephanie Stephen’s paternal grandmother, Tondalia Richardson, tells 9NEWS NOW, “I just don’t understand it. I just don’t understand it. If they were called then why didn’t they take her? That’s the part I don’t understand, this is an infant, why wouldn’t you take her?”
Investigators say it was just before 5:00 AM on February 10th, in the middle of the second round of back-to-back blizzards, when the child’s mother called 9-1-1 because Stephanie, whom many called Tu-Tu, had trouble breathing.
DC Fire and EMS released a statement on Wednesday that says in part, “Within minutes a Medic Unit arrived on the scene. Emergency first responders performed a patient evaluation. There was no transport.” The statement does not indicate why there was no transport.
The sources say both Engine 33 and Medic 33 were dispatched on the call. Medic 33 had a veteran paramedic and an EMT aboard. Both are civilian EMS workers, or “single-role-providers”, as the department calls them.
The release indicates at 1:45 PM the second 911 call was received from the child’s home reporting “abnormal breathing”. This time a different crew aboard Medic 33 transported the little girl to the hospital.
Richardson looked after her granddaughter every week and says, “She was the bubbliest thing. She was loving and happy and outgoing.”
Stephanie was laid to rest this past Tuesday. Her grandmother is wondering why this little girl’s life had to be cut short just shy of the girl’s third birthday.
The grandmother claims Stephanie died of pneumonia.
The paramedic and EMT on the initial call are on administrative duty and are not to have contact with patients as the review continues.