First Responders Arrived at Clinic Six Minutes After Joan Rivers 911 Call

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The New York City Fire Department arrived at the endoscopy clinic where comedian Joan Rivers underwent surgery last week within six minutes of receiving a 911 call, according to a timeline obtained by NBC News. The time is within the department’s normal range of response times to emergency calls.

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The timeline shows that the 911 call from staff at the Yorkville Endoscopy Center, where the 81-year-old comedian was undergoing a surgical procedure on her vocal cords, was received at 9:40 a.m. on Aug. 28. An FDNY engine company arrived at the center at 9:46 a.m., followed a minute later by an emergency medical services unit. Responders found her unconscious and in either "respiratory or cardiac arrest" and transported her by ambulance to Mount Sinai hospital, where she arrived at 10:11 a.m., or 31 minutes after the initial call.

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It is not known how much time elapsed between the time Rivers lost consciousness and the 911 call was made by clinic staff. The New York State Health Department is investigating the incident and the clinic’s response.



— Tom Winter