From left to right: Iain Hendy, John Moore, Kathleen Moore, Jamie Pattison

Billingham grandfather thanks ambulance crew for saving his life

A man who suffered a cardiac arrest on New Year’s Eve at his home in Billingham has been reunited with the crew who saved his life.

John Moore, aged 69, was at home planning on going out to celebrate the New Year with friends when he collapsed. His wife Kathleen and family friend, David, immediately performed CPR and called 999.

North East Ambulance Service (NEAS) Emergency Care Clinical Manager Iain Hendy was first on scene quickly followed by Emergency Care Technicians Jamie Pattison and Steven Laird.

The former rugby player and coach, John is a father of two and a grandfather of four and is recovering well, looking forward to spending more time with his children and grandchildren.  

Kathleen, an ex-nurse said: “John was sitting laughing and joking one minute and the next he was slumped in the chair. Lesley and I got John on the floor while David rang 999, I started CPR straight away.

“Lesley took the phone from David so he could take over CPR from me and the call handler counted with us so David could get the rhythm right. The call handler was brilliant the whole time.”

NEAS call handlers support over 2,200 999 callers with CPR each year. In 2015/16 the service answered 1.160 million emergency 999 and NHS 111 calls, responded to 295,855 incidents that resulted in a patient being taken to hospital, treated and discharged 19,949 patients with telephone advice and treated and discharged 85,021 patients at home.  In the same year, emergency care crews reached 132,948 incidents within the national target of 8 minutes.

Once on scene, Iain, Emergency Care Clinical Manager who has worked at NEAS for 21 years, assessed John and took over performing CPR. John was shocked three times with a defibrillator and once he regained consciousness he was taken to James Cook Hospital by the crew.

Iain added: “It’s been great to see John looking so well. It really gives you a rewarding feeling to know you have been able to make a difference to someone’s life.”

John explains: “I wasn’t in a position to thank them and so wanted to meet them to say thank you for what they did to keep me alive. Kathleen and David kept me going, but these guys saved my life.

“The NHS gets so much flack these days; I think it’s important to thank North East Ambulance Service and the hospital staff. I might not be here if it wasn’t for them.

“I’m getting back into walking and I walk the dogs as much as I can, but I still get breathless. I’ve got a second chance because of the help I received and I’m so pleased I’ll be here to see my grandchildren grow up.”

Speaking about the reunion Jamie, who joined NEAS six months ago, said: “We don’t get to see patients after the incident very often so it is great to be able to see the result, meet John to see how he is getting on.”  

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Copyright 2011 North East Ambulance Service Trust

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