Yossi Cohen is a United Hatzalah volunteer EMT who lives in Kfar Saba and works in the field of finance and mortgage advice.
On Sunday afternoon at around 1:30 p.m., Yossi was at his daughter’s school to pick her up after the school day ended when he suddenly received a notification alerting him to an emergency occurring nearby. In the Post Office in Kfar Saba, an 80-year-old man who had been breathing heavily suddenly collapsed.
Yossi’s daughter, who is used to her father rushing out to emergencies, assured him that she will be okay waiting at school and encouraged him to go and help. “It touches me that my daughter is willing to put herself aside and allow me to save another person’s life,” said Yossi, “It shows how mature she is at such a young age.” Yossi told the school’s guard that he will return shortly, and the guard readily agreed to watch over Yossi’s daughter.
Yossi arrived at the post office after about a minute and a half and found a man performing CPR on the 80-year-old lying unconscious on the ground. Yossi grabbed the medical kit from his ambucycle and connected his defibrillator. Yossi examined the man and took his vitals. The man was experiencing ventricular fibrillation so Yossi administered two shocks from his defibrillator in between rounds of performing CPR to counteract its life-threatening effects.
The mobile intensive care ambulance arrived soon after and the paramedics, together with Yossi’s help, continued the resuscitation until the man’s pulse and breathing returned. It was a long and hard resuscitation of around 40 minutes but the team succeeded in reviving the elderly man.
After the man was safely transported into the ambulance and was on his way to the hospital, the individual who performed CPR on the elderly man up until Yossi arrived, introduced himself. Yossi recognized him as one of his students from a ‘Safe Family’ CPR course that he had taught. The man thanked Yossi and said, “It is all thanks to you that I know how to perform CPR and I was able to help save the man’s life. I took the course as a precaution, but I didn’t think the skills I learned would ever come to any use.”
Yossi said, “It was such an emotional experience for me to see one of my former students in action and to have him thank me for being able to use what I taught. I am so happy that we saved a life together.” Yossi and his student have kept in touch since the incident and even met again a few days later.
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