on a hike I was on yesterday. By the time we reached the hospital, he was dead. It's likely a heart attack.The contact number the man left with the hike leader was called to inform the person of the situation. It turned out to be his wife. When we were told that he was dead, the decision was made to inform his wife immdiately. It is only fair that she knows exactly what's happening instead of being bulls****ed by someone on the phone. She was home at the time.
His 'family' who was on the hike with him and who was present when he collapsed took an additional 20 mins to reach the hospital where we were at. They were upset that the hike leader told the man's wife that he was dead and said that we should have waited to make sure that someone was there with her at the time.
Personally, I totally agree with the hike leader's decision. It's better to inform the concerned party of what's happening while it's happening instead of holding back information till a later time. If the familly was there at the time when the nurses said that he was dead and at that point they said to wait, then we would have waited. One younger family member (late teens/ early twenties) was there but, he was too upset to care to make any decisions.
Just to let you know, in the heat of the situation, we didn't even know that the family who arrived 20 minutes later were actually family. We thought that they were concerned co-workers.
What do you think is the best approach to this situation?