911 Dispatcher Saves Life With Over The Phone CPR

CHESAPEAKE, Va. – A local woman credits her husband’s second chance to the professionalism and care of a 911 dispatcher.

On March 30, Vicki Umplett called 911 after her husband Hank stopped breathing. Michelle Merrill answered the call.

“She was upset and I tried to reassure her that help was on the way but in the meantime she had to get him on the floor,” said Merrill.

Umplett was able to get her husband on his back and performed CPR for several minutes while the Fire and Rescue crews were in route.

When we spoke to Umplett she told our News 3 crew she often thinks back to that day and knows without Merrill, her husband might not be here.

“Every time I would stop, he would turn blue and she kept telling me, ‘Don’t stop, help is coming,’” Umplett said.

Hank Merrill was in the hospital for 22 days after suffering from the heart attack that his wife called about. He is recovering now and before News 3 got ahold of this story, Umplett came to the dispatch center to the thank the woman who saved her husband.

“She was so calm and I don’t remember exactly what she said, but she kept encouraging me to not give up,” Umplett said having already dropped off a cake to the workers to thank Merrill.

For anyone one else, dispatchers want you to know how important it is to make the call and stay calm, giving the dispatcher as much information as you can.

Merrill stayed on the phone with Umplett for 12 minutes until medics were inside and took over the situation.

Umplett said she had taken a CPR class at the Chesapeake Public Library years ago and encourages everyone to take a course in their lifetime. She said you never know when you could need it to save a life.


Source: https://wtkr.com/2018/07/03/husband-survives-heart-attack-after-dispatcher-walks-wife-through-cpr-over-the-phone/


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What is the Difference Between Sudden Cardiac Arrest and Heart attack?

Often times sudden cardiac arrest and heart attack are used synonymously. In truth the two are very different from one another.

Sudden cardiac arrest is when the heart malfunctions and suddenly stops beating. A heart attack is when blood flow to the heart is blocked.

In short a heart attack is about “circulation” and sudden cardiac arrest is an “electrical” problem.

Heart Attack

A heart attack occurs when a blocked artery prevents oxygen rich blood from reaching a section of the heart. If the blocked artery is not reopened quickly, the part of the heart normally nourished begins to die. The longer a person goes without receiving treatment, greater damage will be done to the heart. Symptoms can occur almost immediately. Materializing as sharp pain in the chest, and may travel to the arm, shoulder and back. The symptoms may occur slowly over days or weeks prior to a heart attack. These symptoms often appear as shortness of breath or heartburn. Unlike with sudden cardiac arrest the heart usually doesn’t stop beating during a heart attack.

Sudden Cardiac Arrest

Sudden cardiac arrest occurs suddenly and very often without warning. It is when the heart abruptly begins to beat in an abnormal or irregular rhythm called (arrhythmia). Without organized electrical activity in the heart muscle, there is no consistent contraction of the ventricles, which results in the heart’s inability to generate an adequate cardiac output. With its pumping action disrupted, the heart cannot pump blood to the brain, lungs and other organs. Within seconds a person will lose consciousness and have no pulse. Death can occur within minutes if the victim does not receive immediate treatment.

Heart attacks do increase the risk for sudden cardiac arrest. Other heart conditions can also increase the likelihood for sudden cardiac arrest as well. These conditions include a thickened heart cardiomyopathy, heart failure, arrhythmias, particularly ventricular fibrillation, and long Q-T syndrome.

Sudden Cardiac Arrest

A cardiac arrest victim can be saved if treated immediately. First, **call 9-1-1 for emergency medical services. Then get a Defibrillator (AED) automated external defibrillator if one is available and use it as soon as it arrives. Begin CPR immediately and continue until professional emergency medical personnel arrive. If two people are available, one should begin CPR immediately while the other calls 9-1-1 and finds the Defibrillator .

Sudden cardiac arrest is a leading cause of death

There are over 320,000 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests occur annually in the United States. By performing Hands-Only CPR, you can double or even triple a victim’s chance of survival.


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Cardiac Arrest VS. Heart Attack Infographic