On Sunday morning just after 9:00 a.m., a man in his 70s collapsed while taking a shower in the neighborhood of Gilo, in Jerusalem, An ambulance from Yad Sarah that was called to the scene requested backup and United Hatzalah’s Dispatch and Command center sent out an urgent request for assistance to the closest volunteers.
United Hatzalah volunteer EMT Amit Kahn was on his way to work when he received the alert. He quickly turned his ambucycle in the opposite direction from where he needed to go and sped over to the address. Khan arrived after a few moments and was joined by other EMS personnel as he rushed into the apartment.
A nurse from Yad Sarah as well as a paramedic were already at the scene and had initiated CPR. Khan got to work and alternated between performing chest compressions and applying assisted ventilation with the team.
United Hatzalah volunteer EMT Raphael Poch had just entered Jerusalem from Gush Etzion when he received an alert to an injured person resulting from a violent dispute on the next street over from where the CPR was taking place. Flicking on the lights and sirens of his ambucylce, Poch sped to the scene and arrived just a minute after receiving the alert to the second incident, Poch found the person and saw that there were no injuries after all.
Just then, the mobile intensive care ambulance came around the corner heading to the first incident, the CPR. Upon seeing Poch, with his lights still flashing, the driver waved him over alerting him that more help was needed at the original call. The ambulance team and the United Hatzalah volunteer rushed up the stairs and joined the CPR effort.
As they came into the apartment, they joined the CPR effort in an attempt to save the man’s life. A few minutes later, the combined team managed to regain a pulse. Poch together with members of the ICU team got busy preparing the patient for transport, as Kahn maintained administering assisted ventilation. The team secured the patient to a backboard and carried him down the stairs to the recently arrived ambulance below. He was taken to the hospital for further care and continuing treatment.
“We managed to bring the man’s pulse back without a shock, just by our quick intervention,” said Kahn. “I am very thankful that we succeeded at saving this man’s life today.”
“It was one of those moments of divine intervention I guess, causing me to be in the right place at the right time,” Poch said. “As I was farther away when the CPR alert went out, I didn’t receive the notification about the CPR, only the second notification of the incident of violence. After making sure that those involved were uninjured, I saw the ambulance approaching and the driver waved me over to assist. It was a terrific gesture of collaboration on his part and Kol Hakavod to him for doing it. Thanks to the work of Kahn, the nurse, and other first responders already inside, the man’s pulse returned and we were able to transport him to the hospital as quickly as possible.”
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