Early Sunday morning, just before 4:00 a.m., a man in his late 60s was not feeling well at an apartment on Abulafya Street near Nachalot. He began to make gurgling sounds and his wife and daughters woke up from the noise and rushed to his aid, only to find that the man had lost consciousness and was no longer breathing. They immediately called emergency services for help. 

A United Hatzalah Ambulance after responding to an emergency 300x225 1
A United Hatzalah Ambulance after responding to an emergency

Yosef Black, together with Zeev Klein, Yosef Cohen, and Yisrael Manas were just finishing an ambulance shift and were driving by the Central Bus Station in Jerusalem to return the ambulance to headquarters when they received the alert from dispatch notifying them about the unconscious man. Black, who was driving the ambulance, quickly responded that the team was en route, flipped on the lights and siren, and sped to the address given. Arriving in less than two minutes, the ambulance crew found the man, not breathing and without a pulse. 


“I instructed one of the volunteers to attach a defibrillator as we began compressions,” recounted Black. “Within less than a minute of our arrival, the man received his first shock. We administered compressions and provided assisted ventilation for three or four minutes after that before the man’s pulse came back and he began to breathe once more. Other volunteers arrived as did another ambulance team and we worked together to stabilize the man’s condition. A mobile intensive care ambulance arrived a few minutes later and transported the patient to the hospital for further treatment and care.”  


Black added, “The whole CPR took just a few minutes, and I’m very glad that we were nearby and able to respond so quickly. The man’s family, who only spoke English, were hysterical. I told one of the volunteers who I knew spoke English to talk with them and help calm them down. When the man’s pulse returned I made sure that the family was aware and this helped them recover a bit. The whole ordeal was something was emotional for me as well. This is only the fourth shift that I was running in the area here and to be able to respond that quickly a save a person’s life is exactly why we do what we do. Everything worked well today, and I feel blessed to have been a part of helping save this man’s life, and help prevent a tragedy for this family.” 

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