Towards the end of 2019, Efrat resident Roxanne Weinberg took a training course to become a United Hatzalah volunteer EMT. Now she applied what learned in the course in saving the life of her own daughter.
The incident took place three weeks ago, in the middle of the night, when Roxanne’s greatest nightmare materialized: her daughter, Talia, who was premature, was choking right in front of her eyes.
Two years ago, Roxanne and her husband Michael lost their premature baby in the hospital, after only eight days. But Roxanne did not allow the trauma of that tragedy to prevent her from taking action now, and began to perform CPR on her own daughter while her husband was calling for help.
Roxanne realized that the back blows she was giving her daughter were ineffective, so she began compressions and assisted breathing and carried on until her friend, neighbor, and fellow United Hatzalah EMT Kalanit Taub arrived on the scene.
Roxanne and Kalanit managed to open little Talia’s airway by using suction to remove the liquids collected in her throat. The two of them moved so fast that Talia started breathing again even before the ambulance had arrived. Talia and Roxanne were then evacuated to the hospital for care and observation, but the immediate danger was over.
Now, as both mother and daughter are back at home, Roxanne stressed how important it is for every mother to take at least a basic CPR and first aid course.
“We have no way of knowing what will happen and when or where it will happen,” she said. “As mothers, we are often the closest person to our child, so it’s incredibly important to know what to do ii an emergency. It can save the life of your child just like it saved the life of mine.”
“The whole incident brought me back to when my infant son passed away,” Roxanne said. “It made it hard for me to move in that moment when I saw my daughter choking. I thought that I wouldn’t be able to save her, but I knew that if I did nothing she would die for sure. I forcibly distanced myself from my own emotions and did whatever I could to save her life. I fell back on my training and on the information that I learned in my EMT course.”
Talia was born in early July when she was only 27 weeks old. On the day she was born, Roxanne was scheduled to participate in the graduation ceremony of her EMT training class. Instead, she watched the ceremony from the hospital while she was in labor. Talia stayed in the hospital until the beginning of September. Today she is four months old and still connected to a monitor and a feeding tube, but she is expected to grow and lead a normal life.
President and Founder of United Hatzalah Eli Beer said: “United Hatzalah volunteers work within their communities. Often they save people close to them, their neighbors, sometimes their friends or acquaintances. Roxanne saved a person who was more dear to her than anyone, and she did it by implementing the training she was given during her EMT course. We are truly proud of her and we look forward to her being an active member of our network of volunteers. Just two days ago, while driving with her family to do some errands, she responded to a serious car accident on Highway 60 and treated a Palestinian driver who was badly injured, until an ambulance was able to arrive.”