Caritas worker denies saying 'none of our business'

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 05 May, 2010, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 05 May, 2010, 12:00am

A receptionist at Caritas Medical Centre denied saying 'it's none of the hospital's business' when a man collapsed in a heart attack outside the hospital, an inquest jury heard.

The inquest is being held into the death of Yeung Tak-cheung, 56, who had a heart attack outside the Sham Shui Po hospital on December 20, 2008. Wan Hoi-see was the receptionist on duty at the time.

According to Yeung's then business partner, Leung Sai-ming, Wan told him to call 999 instead of offering any immediate help. Wan admitted in court to saying that.

Leung testified that he said to Wan: 'Someone fainted outside. Please help.' He said her reply was: 'That someone fainted outside is none of the hospital's business. Call 999.' But Wan told the court that what she said was: 'I am administrative staff, not healthcare staff. Please call 999. It is quicker.'

Wan is a Form Five graduate who has worked at Caritas since 2005. She admitted she did not ask Leung about the fainted man, thinking it was not serious. But a minute after he had sought help, she said, she went out to see what was happening and called the accident and emergency department.

Yeung Fei-lung said his father was diagnosed with heart problems in 2005. That day, they moved 400 boxes each weighing 10kg to a truck in Fat Cheung Street, Cheung Sha Wan. As they were driving to their office, his father collapsed. The son told Leung to drive to Caritas, which was the closest hospital.

Dr Rockson Wei, who was on a lunch break, saw that someone had collapsed. Wei told the court he called the accident and emergency department for help at once and expected help to arrive within 10 minutes. He tried to resuscitate the man, and then called a second time. An ambulance arrived and Yeung was later pronounced dead.

The inquest continues with Dr Ma Hok-cheung, head of Caritas Medical Centre, to testify next