19 October 2017 - Cardiac Arrest Survivor Meets Ambulance Service Staff who Helped Save his Life

Cardiac arrest reunion

An Oldham man who made a remarkable recovery after having a cardiac arrest yesterday, met up with the North West Ambulance Service staff who helped save his life.

David Pearson, 64, from Royton was at home asleep in bed in December 2016 after a normal day when his wife, awake reading, heard him make a strange noise and noticed that he had suddenly stopped breathing. David’s frantic wife, Stella called 999 and spoke to Emergency Medical Dispatcher, Paul Matthews who kept her calm and talked her through what to do advising to start CPR.

Minutes later, Paramedic, Donna Merrick and Emergency Medical Technician, Matthew Wrigley arrived in rapid response vehicles, quickly followed by ambulance crew Michael Sharp and Lauren Murray. The crew worked on David for over an hour and administered four shocks of the defibrillator before he was stable enough to be taken to hospital.

David was rushed to Royal Oldham Hospital where he was treated by doctors and nurses and his family were told to prepare for the worst as his chances of survival were slim. He was put into an induced coma and stayed in hospital for two months but miraculously managed to pull through and has now made a full recovery.

Emergency Medical Technician 2, Matthew Wrigley, said: “Working for the ambulance service, we don't always get feedback on the patients after they have left our care and hearing from patients such as David, who has made such a remarkable recovery, really brings home the reason that I do this job.

“David’s story really shows the importance of people in the community knowing how to do life-saving CPR skills. Those first few minutes before we arrive are crucial and it’s usually a family member or member of the public who does that all-important job.

“If Stella hadn’t have acted so quickly, the outcome could have been completely different.”

David met up with the ambulance crew and emergency medical dispatcher at Rochdale ambulance station at a heartfelt and emotional reunion where he thanked the crew for the work they did.

David’s wife Stella said: “It’s been a miracle that David is still here and we cannot thank these people enough for the fantastic work they have done. The ambulance crew and the staff at the hospital have all been absolutely amazing!

“I remembered how to do CPR from a training course over 10 years ago but I suppose it’s like riding a bike, once you learn you never forget! I would urge anybody to get clued up on these simple skills as you just never know when you might need to use them.”

Retired teacher, David is now back at work, writing GCSE and A Level papers and back doing new hobbies he loves such as walking football.

For those unsure what to do in the event of a cardiac arrest, North West Ambulance Service has created a quick animation video which explains the life-saving skills needed. Take a look here, https://youtu.be/azmpvgIdjAA