Successful collaboration between emergency services sparks exceptional patient outcome and enhanced care pathways

“We are beyond thankful for how well he was cared for on-Island, and how quickly emergency services responded.”

During a practice session at TT 2023, local resident David McAllister was working in Glen Vine when he suffered a cardiac arrest. Thankfully, his quick-thinking colleague, Paul Whitehead, began CPR while they waited for medical services to arrive.

Jamie Walsh, a critical care paramedic at GNAAS, was in the Isle of Man supporting healthcare services for the public, and was one of the first responders on the scene along with a colleague from the Isle of Man Ambulance Service. Manx Roadracing Medical Services also responded quickly, arriving on scene with two rapid response vehicles.

On Thursday 30 May, Jamie met with David McAllister and his wife Beverley, who wanted to meet the people who helped save David’s life.

Reflecting on the events of last year, the couple were delighted to meet Jamie and share some of David’s recovery story.

“David suffered the initial cardiac arrest and was in a coma for six days in Liverpool. There was a bleed on his brain, he had several broken ribs, and the prognosis did not look good. Once David had awoken from the coma, he required intensive care and support from many different teams. Along with his own determination and focus to push through, incredibly David was discharged from Liverpool hospital after 14 days with no cognitive impairment. He attended the Cardiac Rehabilitation Programme at Noble’s Hospital and returned to work after only three months.

“We are so grateful to everyone who helped David. We are beyond thankful for how well he was cared for on-Island, and how quickly emergency services responded.”

This recovery was largely thanks to his colleague, who heroically performed CPR for fifteen minutes until medical support arrived.

Jamie spoke of how they had to shock David’s heart four times to get a rhythm. An ECG showed that David had suffered a heart attack so an anaesthetic was administered to stabilise David before he was airlifted to Liverpool to continue treatment.

From this event, a new pathway was developed to ensure that Manx Care can respond to any future incidents in a timely manner. So far, nearly thirty people have followed this pathway successfully.

Speaking on his memory of the day, Jamie said: “I came away from that job feeling like we had given David the best chance for recovery. Everything fell into place that day. Seeing David and being told he has made a full recovery; so much so that he is taking part in the Grand Fondo cycling event covering 42 miles, is just ace.

“I feel really lucky and privileged to be able to meet David and Beverley today. It’s a definite perk of the job!’

Will Bellamy, Head of the Isle of Man Ambulance Service, commented: “It’s been great to meet David and Beverley today and hear their story. It helps us to make sure we are continuously improving the service we offer to patients.

“The coordination between the Isle of Man Ambulance Service, Great North Air Ambulance Service (GNAAS) and Manx Roadracing Medical Services was exemplary and sparked the development of a new pathway based on the successful outcome that David experienced.”

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