Early on Tuesday morning, just before 1:00 a.m. a man in his 50s suffered a cardiac arrest in his home in Kfar Yonah. The man’s wife initiated CPR immediately and told their daughter to call for help.
Baruch Maclof was sleeping soundly when his emergency communication device from United Hatzalah began to blare. Maclof jumped out of bed, threw on the tracksuit and slip-on shoes that he leaves at the foot of his bed for just this purpose, and rushed out to his ambucycle. Jumping on the vehicle he rushed over to the given address given by the dispatcher. The address was in Kfar Yonah just a few blocks from Maclof’s house. He was the first responder at the scene and arrived in less than two minutes.
However, when Maclof knocked on the door, the person inside who opened it was confused. There was no emergency at the given address. Maclof relayed back to dispatch that this was the wrong address and the dispatcher, who was still on the phone with the man’s distraught daughter, finally got her to calm down enough in order to repeat the address. The correct address was another two blocks away.
Maclof sped off to the correct address and once again arrived first at the scene. He rushed inside and found the man’s wife still performing chest compressions. He attached a defibrillator which did not advise a shock, set out his oxygen tank and Ambu mask, and then took over compressions from the exhausted wife. The two continued performing CPR until an ambulance arrived sometime later.
Just as the ambulance team was arriving, the man’s pulse returned. The team stabilized the patient and then loaded him into the ambulance for transport.
“This man is alive thanks to the quick intervention from his wife,” Maclof said later on Tuesday. “The miscommunication regarding the address cost me valuable time in responding and the fact that she kept performing compressions is likely what enabled us to bring the man’s pulse back so quickly.”
Maclof said that there was quite a bit of providence involved in the successful rescue as well. “I responded to a lot of medical emergencies this past Friday and I depleted most of my medical equipment. I also provided medical coverage for a soccer match in Raanana on Monday night and used more there as well. Between the two I was left with very little supplies. After the game, I went to our regional equipment center in Raanana in order to restock my equipment. I had no way of knowing that I would receive a serious medical emergency later that same night, but I know that it is always good to be prepared no matter what. Thank God I made that decision as the fresh medical equipment I had with me was essential in treating the man this morning.”
“Saving a life is a truly great feeling,” Maclof added. “The only other comparable incident I had was when I was the only medical responder assisting in the successful delivery of a baby boy last month. These are instances where one can actually see the hand of God in the act of creation. It is humbling to be a part of these experiences and it left me with such a high that I still can’t get over it. The man’s wife should be extremely proud of what she did, he is likely alive today because of her efforts.”