A nurse on Heartlands’ Cardiology Ward who saved the life of a man, aged 82, while she was on a shopping trip at Touchwood in Solihull, was re-united with the great-grandfather as she was awarded for going beyond the call of duty.
James Cooper collapsed in Starbucks at the Solihull shopping centre, during a day out with his wife of 61 years Margaret. Luckily, Heartlands nurse Kelly King was in the café at the time and immediately jumped into action and began to administer CPR on James along with another gentleman, before shocking him with Touchwood’s on-site defibrillator, whilst waiting for ambulances to arrive.
After an ambulance was called James was rushed to Heartlands Hospital where he was treated in Accident and Emergency before being transferred to Ward 6, the ward where Kelly works. She then went on to care for James throughout his recovery.
The couple from Hollywood returned to Heartlands to surprise Kelly as she was presented with a Compassion Card in recognition of her quick-thinking actions.
Compassion Cards were launched by the Trust last year and are awarded to nurses who are nominated by their colleagues or members of the public for demonstrating particular kindness, empathy and regularly going the extra mile for their patients.
Talking of the experience, Kelly said: “It threw me quite a bit as I had no team with me but luckily I was able to use the automatic defibrillator in Touchwood. It was just instinct. It has been wonderful to see James again and I’m overwhelmed to be recognised in this way.”
James said: “I am very grateful for everyone that cared for me whilst I was here. Everyone was always going round with a smile on their face, always happy, it was lovely.”
Speaking of Kelly, James added: “It was a case of right place, right time. I can’t thank her enough.”
Andy Cole, general manager at Touchwood, adds: “The health and safety of our guests is our number one priority, which is why we have had Automated External Defibrillators on site, along with a fully trained team, for over 10 years. We are delighted that our equipment was able to assist Kelly in saving the life of Mr Cooper and we wish him all the best.”
Many calls have been made across the country appealing for more public defibrillators to be placed in communities. Administering an electric shock through the chest wall is the most important method of helping someone to recover from a cardiac arrest.
The British Heart Foundation estimates survival chances for cardiac arrest victims reduce by 10 per cent for every minute they go without CPR and defibrillation.
Touchwood is equipped with several defibrillators, donated by the British Heart Foundation. Members of the Touchwood team have been trained to administer first aid and use a defibrillator correctly, following intensive training with the West Midlands Ambulance Service.