Doctor who treated unconscious teen in Cork warns kids are playing 'Russian roulette at its worst' by taking drugs


A doctor who treated an unconscious 15-year-old boy has warned that kids are playing “Russian roulette at its worst” by taking lethal drugs.

The medic rushed to the scene after a group of teens were said to have consumed a substance they believed was ecstasy on Saturday.

The teen was later found in public, non-responsive.

The West Cork Rapid Response urged parents to speak with their teenagers about drug and alcohol use and posted a Facebook message, which said: “Another drug-fuelled night out in Clonakilty using up valuable emergency service resources.”

Dr Jason van der Velde, who attended to the boy, told Patricia Messinger on C103 Cork Radio today: “These drugs are being cut up in these areas and divvied up for onward sale. And you think of all the ways you are putting yourself at risk of by taking some unkown tablet or liquid. It’s just craziness. It’s Russian roulette at its worst.”

The doc, who had to contact the schoolboy’s parents, said: “The first call was to an unconscious 15 year-old. Really that kind of set in trend what we found. You expect to find somebody out of their head on drink but there was absolutely not a sausage of evidence that this child had taken any alcohol whatsoever.

“He was vomiting, spitting at us and what not and behaving irrationally. And there wasn’t a smell of alcohol.

“After quizzing one of them in depth it kind of transpired that they had taken ecstasy, what they thought was ecstasy. You can’t ever know what these kids are taking. Certainly the behaviour was not that of someone who had taken a pure form of ecstasy.”

Speaking about a disco which was happening in the area close to where the inebriated teen was found, Dr van der Velde said the disco staff “actually found the child” and they “provided valuable service to our community and were actually patrolling the local neighbourhood to ensure that kids behaved themselves”.

He added: “There’s lots of misinformation out there. People are assuming that this was to do with a disco and it certainly wasn’t. They employ medics to look after kids if they become unwell.

"If the disco wasn’t there there’d be far more problems with kids taking drugs and drink and being in all sorts of places around town and hidden out of sight of safety for want of a better word."

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