The Worst Ambulance Trip Ever

Phillip Standin... - Posted on 16 December 2014

Bruce Allison

I asked my wife Kathy Galves, “What happened when King Ambulance took me away?” This is her response:

"When the ambulance attendant asked Bruce what hospital did he want to go to, he said "Saint Francis."

Before they took Bruce away, they asked me, "Were you coming with him?"

I said, "No, but I'll meet you at Saint Francis." As I was getting ready I looked out the window several times. The ambulance was still sitting there. I released my service dog Betty from the bathroom, where I had put her for the attendants’ safety. She is very protective toward her tribe.

I looked out the window again, and they had been sitting there for at least 45 minutes. I was done getting ready, so I was looking to catch a ride to Saint Francis with the ambulance. But then they left.

I called a Green Cab. It arrived in about 10 minutes. We went to Saint Francis. From the time I called the cab to when we arrived at Saint Francis it took about 30 minutes.

I went to Emergency, and they said that they had not been contacted nor had they seen any ambulance from King American Ambulance Company. That's when I got pissed.

"Where the hell did they take my husband?" I thought I was in the middle of a real live Science Fiction Horror movie. Except it wasn't a movie. I went out and found a San Francisco Fire Department Rescue Ambulance that was sitting out front.

"Excuse me, can you help me?" I said.

“King Ambulance?” they said, "Oh no! King Ambulance is a private company and the City has no control over them."

As stated above, King Ambulance had never appeared.

I said, "King Ambulance took my husband away, supposedly to Saint Francis Hospital, but he never arrived. Where would they have taken him when they were directed to take him to Saint Francis Hospital? I was never notified that they were taking him someplace else."

They said, "The only reason he would have been taken someplace else is if the patient was suffering a heart attack in route." They told me to call King Ambulance. I did, and King Ambulance said he was taken to a UC Hospital, and they didn't know which UC Hospital campus.

A good Samaritan recommended I go talk to CVS Pharmacy-- they would be able to direct me to the correct location they took Bruce. I did, and they did. Bruce was taken to UC Parnassus Campus.

When I located Bruce he was laying on a gurney in an inner hallway in the Emergency wing at UC. I arrived at about 5:00 pm.

Jazzie Collins was the First Community Reparation Chairperson and also Co-chairperson of LGBT Elder Taskforce. As an AIDS patient she had to be very careful about her health. One day she was very sick. So she picked up the phone to call an ambulance to go to Kaiser Hospital.

The late Ms. Collins was very proud of her Transgender situation. King Ambulance was very homophobic and Transphobic. When Jazzie asked to be taken to Kaiser Hospital they told her it was psychosomatic.

Jazzie said, "If you don't take me to Kaiser Hospital I will sue you.” She knew they were in violation of a law, which she quoted instinctively from the State Hospital Code.

Bruce's version of what happened that day.

As I was at home, I was in pain and I felt like an alien was going to be born out of my stomach, like the Mel Brooks movie Spaceballs. I asked my wife to call Saint Francis immediately. She did, and this is what she told me they said.

We called 911, and that’s when the fun begins. The ambulance asked me what day it was, and I gave them April 28, 1951. This was my birthday. I was off from the real date by 63 years. I told them about my pain. They checked my vitals, and found out that my blood pressure was 180 over 90. My usual blood pressure is 110 over 60. I was in so much pain.

An attendant said I was a wimp and that was why I wanted to go to the hospital. That's when I bit his head off. On the way, they said there was no room at Saint Francis.

They asked, “Do you want me to tell your girlfriend?" She is my African Descendent Wife and I am Caucasian.

Arrived at UCSF Parnassus at 4:00 pm. Placed on a gurney at 4:00 and was placed in a room on a hospital bed. I waited until midnight to be seen by a doctor. Then they took me in my hospital bed down the hallway for a CAT scan. Then the doctor diagnosed Pancreatitis, so they got my bed ready.

In comes this Black woman (about 300 lbs.). She said, "I am looking for this dead man by the name of Bruce Allison.”

I said, "I'm Bruce Allison, and rumors of my death have been widely exaggerated."  The same woman broke up in a laugh. It looked like that laugh was the biggest laugh she had in her entire life. She took me to the 5th floor. I will write more about my experience in other articles.

This is a recommendation to the powers that be: Federal, State or City. An ad hoc committee should be established to investigate ambulances. Not only professionals should be on the committee, but laymen that have used these services, better known as consumers. Licensing requirements should be tightened and given teeth. Fines should be applied so that these companies cannot use barbaric practices for capitalistic gains. I will start with my own Supervisor, Jane Kim, and my own Assemblyman, Tom Ammiano, or his replacement.

This is Bad News Bruce Signing Out.


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