It’s been a terrible few days for the Aussie festival scene, between the tragic death of a young woman from a fallen tree branch at Lost Paradise on NSW’s Central Coast and the serious crowd crush / reports of three sexual assaults at Falls in Lorne and Marion Bay respectively.
Now Lost Paradise has been hit with worrying claims a 22-year-old attendee was repeatedly denied treatment for asthma at the Friday festival because she “didn’t have an audible wheeze” and there was an alleged lack of medical supplies.
In a lengthy complaint posted to the event Facebook page, a friend of Sydney-based lifestyle and wellness coach and model Tess Jackson wrote that she developed shortness of breath shortly after arriving at the festival site due to the windy, dusty weather conditions.
Tess Jackson spent hours in hospital after Lost Paradise
Approaching the on-site medical team, “she advised them of how she was feeling and after listening to her chest, they told her that she did not have an audible wheeze”.
“She explained to them that on previous cases of her being hospitalised with asthma her symptoms were also not accompanied by a wheeze, as is not unusual for many asthma sufferers,” wrote Lillian Brancalion.“She asked if she would be able to have some ventolin as she was feeling very unwell and having severe difficulty breathing, despite her “lack of wheeze”. She was told – I WISH I WAS JOKING – they they were short on supplies and were UNABLE to offer her a ventolin as others may have “needed it more”.“How can such a large event such as this run out of simple medical supplies such as a VENTOLIN? This is an outdoor event in a location where people don’t have easy access to the shops, medical attention etc. And yet my friend who had paid to attend this event was told she was not priority enough for a ventolin despite severe shortness of breath.”
Jackson was forced to walk a kilometre back to her tent to get her own supplies but – realising she didn’t have a spacer, which is an attachment needed to administer the Ventolin – she returned to the medical tent and was again allegedly told by staff they didn’t have one and that she wasn’t sick enough to be given priority treatment because her gums “weren’t turning blue” (a sign of oxygen deprivation).
Staff also apparently implied that, as she wasn’t displaying the right set of symptoms, she could be making it up.
“My friend was struggling to breathe and your staff had the audacity to stress her further and accuse her of lying after refusing her medical attention,” added Brancalion.“I do not have words for the level of disgust that I feel. People have already died at this event this year and I can’t help but wonder if inadequate medical training played a part.”
Jackson drove herself to hospital, where she was monitored in the emergency department overnight.
Here’s her friend’s account in full:
PEDESTRIAN.TV has contacted Lost Paradise for comment and will update the story if / when we hear back.
Photo: Facebook / Tess Jackson.