Last Monday at 11:30 AM, Yaniv Abayov, a Kollel student, was learning at home in Holon, a city just southeast of Tel Aviv, when his United Hatzalah communications device alerted him to a medical emergency at nearby Arlozorov Street. An 85-year-old woman with severe pre-existing medical conditions had collapsed, and Yaniv ran outside to his ambucycle and rushed over to her address.
He got there with several other United Hatzalah volunteers from the Holon chapter, and the team of EMTs checked the woman’s vital signs. She had no pulse, so they initiated chest compressions and assisted breathing in a full-blown CPR effort.
After seven minutes, an intensive care ambulance crew arrived and attached a heart monitor to the patient. The monitor did not advise applying an electric shock, so the combined crew of medical personnel worked together, applying several rounds of CPR. After an hour of compressions and assisted breathing the hard work paid off, and the elderly woman’s pulse and breathing finally returned. She was then transported to the nearest hospital for further treatment.
Yaniv was later told that it was the woman’s birthday, and he relayed the message to all the volunteers who had participated in the rescue.
“We were a total of 9 medical personnel at the scene, and we worked on the woman for an hour,” Yaniv said, adding: “She may have not have survived if even one person were missing. When a team works together and is synced so well, we get the best outcome. The teamwork and cooperation of everyone on hand saved the woman’s life, it’s truly heart-warming. I was reminded of it when I told my fellow EMTs about the woman’s birthday. We all experienced the long CPR procedure together, and more importantly, you can truly feel the family aspect of United Hatzalah when you get the chance to work in a large team and save a life.”