Just after 7:00 a.m. on Wednesday morning, a woman in her 50s with a complicated medical history was about to eat breakfast at her home in the Galilean city of Tur’an. Her sister was bringing her some food when the woman lost consciousness.
Knowing the woman’s medical history, her sister quickly checked her blood sugar and found it extremely low. The woman had gone into a hypoglycemic coma. The sister immediately called emergency services for help, as before her very eyes her sister’s heart and breathing stopped.
Ameen Ghaben, who lives in Tur’an, was asleep at his home when his emergency communications device blared alerting him to the nearby medical emergency. The United Hatzalah volunteer EMT and registered nurse quickly got up, threw on some clothes, and raced to the given address just a few streets away. He was the first responder in the door and quickly checked the woman’s vital signs. Finding the woman unconscious, not breathing, and with no pulse, he alerted dispatch that he was performing CPR and requested backup as he launched into compressions.
Ameen performed compressions for a few minutes alone until more help arrived. Two mobile intensive care ambulances arrived and the teams quickly joined Ameen’s efforts providing assisted breathing and medications to stabilize the woman’s condition. A defibrillator was attached and the woman received four shocks. Twenty minutes after Ameen arrived and initiated CPR the woman’s pulse came back.
“Once we got her pulse back we administered two doses of glucose to raise her sugar levels so that she would no longer be in hypoglycemic shock,” Ameen explained. “After that, we brought her to the ambulance and she was transported to Poriya Hospital in Tiberias where she will receive follow-up care. I hope and pray that she makes a full recovery and can go back to her sister and family.”
Ameen concluded by saying, “I work as a registered nurse. I help people all the time. But saving a life, there is no better feeling than that. There is no better reason to wake up in the morning than to save a life. That is why I joined United Hatzalah so that I could save lives and help people, help my neighbors and community, even when I am not at work. There is nothing better than that.”