The storefront
The storefront United Hatzalah

On Sunday night, just after 10 p.m., United Hatzalah volunteer EMT Avi Koritz was in his shop in the Geulah neighborhood of Jerusalem preparing to close when a stranger came running into the store yelling hysterically. Avi heard the man yelling and noticed that he was holding his abdomen where he had a bleeding wound. The man was shouting that he had been stabbed. Avi immediately called United Hatzalah’s Dispatch and Command Center requesting backup.

The 24-year-old was confused and hyperventilating as he tried explaining what had happened. Avi calmed the man and explained to him that he was going to help. Avi started by bandaging the patient's abdomen wound, applying pressure to stop the hemorrhaging.

Avi then noticed that the man had additional stab wounds in both of his hands, and they were both bleeding profusely. While bandaging the hand wounds and calming the man, additional EMTs and medical personnel began arriving at the scene to assist in what was described as a serious stab injury.

“In a matter of minutes, my storefront had turned into a scene that could be mistaken for a mass casualty incident,” explained Avi. “I couldn’t count the number of EMTs that arrived at the scene in just a few minutes. Soon after that many ambulances and police officers arrived. Some EMTs even stayed behind to help clean the staircase from the patient's blood.”

Avi briefed the paramedic from the mobile intensive care ambulance that had arrived at the scene, and the patient was quickly taken to the nearest hospital for further treatment and observation.

“I recognized the man, he works a few blocks down from my store,” added Avi. “I’m not sure if he came to me knowing that I am an EMT, or just because my store was open late, but regardless of the reason, he was lucky that he came to me. He was so anxious and breathing rapidly that it may have worsened his wounds. I was lucky enough to be in the right place at the right time and was able to treat the man before his wounds became life-threatening.”

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