When Tracey Hillam signed up for an Emergency First Aid at Work course, she thought the most she would ever have to deal with is the cuts and broken bones that come with being a parent. She certainly didn’t expect to be using her skills for something more serious only a few days later…
Tracey was at home on Sunday evening when her neighbour’s daughter knocked at the door. The young girl said that her friend had ‘passed out and hadn’t come round’ and asked Tracey for help. Tracey set off to the youth club opposite her home to take a look.
‘I wasn't really expecting much more than a faint and thought she would’ve come round’.
But as Tracey walked over to the casualty and quizzed her friend on what the girl had eaten, had she taken anything; she was told that the casualty suffered from epilepsy.
‘On getting to them it was clear she was out cold, she did not respond to me talking to her, touching her. Her eyes were partly open but not focused, I noticed that her body was stiff, not relaxed, her breathing was OK, but her hands were shaking a bit.’
Tracey quickly moved glass out of the way, put her cardigan under the girl’s head and laid her down gently.
Tracey commends her First on Scene trainer, Jayne, for being able to recognise the symptoms of the non-convulsive seizure, ‘when doing seizures Jayne stood staring ahead to show us that not all fits are violent shaking, I think because I was sure of it I was confident in what to do.’
Tracey monitored the girl’s airway and breathing throughout but as she had already been unconscious for about 10 minutes, Tracey decided it was time to ring 999 for an ambulance.
The operator talked Tracey through putting the girl into the recovery position. The girl’s hands started shaking again and her breathing changed, ‘it was like she was panicking/running. She still had not come round and about 15 minutes had passed at this point, I just stayed with her, checking her breathing, talking to her.’
When the ambulance crew arrived and took over, they sat the girl up, tried waking her, lifted her onto her feet, started walking her to the ambulance, during this time she came round and started crying. Tracey then left and went home.
First on Scene are incredibly proud of all our learner success stories and would like to say a massive well done to Tracey. Her ability to stay calm throughout, assess the situation carefully, know when to call an ambulance and know how to react to changes in the casualty’s condition, means the girl received the best first aid response.
Well done Tracey!