Early Wednesday morning, a man in his early 60s was found unconscious lying on the ground in Netivot. Passersby noticed the individual and called the emergency dispatch center, which alerted nearby first responders.
Ben Zion Levi, a United Hatzalah volunteer EMT, was walking on the same street as the emergency without his medical kit when his alert went off. Understanding that the retrieval of his equipment would make him lose precious seconds, he immediately rushed to the scene where he found the man pulseless and not breathing. Ben Zion initiated CPR, performing chest compressions on his own until he was joined five minutes later by another volunteer EMT with medical equipment.
The second volunteer took out the defibrillator and attached it to the man. The pair administered several electric shocks in accordance with the device’s recommendations, with rounds of chest compressions in between. Ben Zion also took out the bag valve mask and used it to ventilate the patient.
After another shock, the man suddenly regained consciousness, moments before a mobile intensive care ambulance arrived at the scene. The EMTs updated the ambulance crew and assisted in transferring the man into the ambulance, which transported him to the nearest hospital for further care and treatment.
Ben Zion reflected after the incident and said: “I'm glad I was very close to today’s incident since in cases of cardiac arrests such as this one, the timeliness of a first responder’s arrival at the scene is a major factor in the ability to save the patient’s life, even without any equipment. I believe that everyone should be trained to respond to emergencies because one cannot know when they will be called upon to help another person in need of medical care. I am grateful that the training provided to me by United Hatzalah allows me to do so on a regular basis.’’