22 April 2016 - Mum Given Life Saving Skills

Sam And RichardSamantha Furmston, Rosie Furmston, Richard Lambert

A mother from Carlisle saved the life of her 18 month year old daughter the day after learning lifesaving skills from a North West Ambulance Service (NWAS) first aid trainer.

Richard Lambert, a Rostering Co-ordinator with NWAS and Heartstart instructor taught vital life-saving first aid at a training event held in February, hosted by the charity Tic Toc which fundraises to install defibrillators across Cumbria. At the event Richard demonstrated how to perform CPR, use a defibrillator and what to do if someone is bleeding or choking.

In the audience that night was Samantha Furmston, who was not originally intending to go along as her little girl Rosie had been ill for a few days. However, she was extremely keen to learn first aid and decided to attend in the end; little did she realise it would then help her save Rosie’s life.

Samantha said: “Rosie had been coughing and being sick and I was starting to get worried, so I called the NHS 111 Service who advised me to see the out of hours’ doctor at the hospital. She had been crying and screaming during the journey but as soon as I had parked the car there was just no noise from her. She was suddenly struggling to breathe and had turned a pale, almost blue colour.

“I instinctively pulled her out of her car seat and everything that I had learnt from the evening before about choking just kicked in. I gave her four back blows and then noticed some vomit come out of her mouth. I then felt her take a deep breath and she started crying.

“What happened to Rosie just proves that having that training is invaluable and you never know when you might need it, it most likely helped to save my little girl’s life. So thank you Richard and Tic Toc, as if it had happened 24 hours earlier I would have been completely clueless.”

Richard said: “On occasions like these it proves that knowing basic first aid along with having the confidence to use the skills means the difference between life and death. It doesn't matter who performs the first aid - it’s the speed that is critical. Without Samantha’s timely response things could have been very different for little Rosie.”

“I’m always asked about doing first aid on children, as adults can tell you what’s wrong with them but often children can’t so you need to know what to do. Especially as many parents worry about their children putting things in their mouth such as coins, or toys getting stuck and perhaps might not realise that if their child has been sick that vomit can also cause choking.

“It really is essential that everyone learns basic life saving techniques as they really do help save lives.”