Off duty medic saves neighbour's life after he collapsed in the street while washing his car

A recently qualified off duty medic used her training to save the life of a neighbour who had collapsed in the street.

Thursday, 3rd October 2019, 16:45 pm
Updated Friday, 4th October 2019, 09:37 am
Physician associate Beth McLean who saved neighbour's life after he collapsed in the street.

Beth McLean, a physician associate for North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust was faced with the ‘life or death’ scenario while she was at home in Belmont, Durham.

While revising for her upcoming national exams, she was called outside by her mother after a neighbour collapsed while washing his car.

Beth said: “I had often thought about how I would respond to an emergency situation outside of work and just methodically ran over what I had been taught.”

She also faced the problem of trying to move the man who had become wedged between his car and the kerb.

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Beth said: “Another neighbor helped me to safely move him on to the pavement so I could avoid any spinal damage whilst I was performing chest compressions’.

An ambulance was called and arrived just 11 minutes later.

Beth had rotated administrating compressions with her mum – who is a radiographer for James Cook University Hospital.

After the North East Ambulance Service team set to work on the patient, he was taken off to University Hospital of North Durham where he was stabilised.

Beth added: “I couldn’t really sleep that night wondering what had happened to my neighbour but, the next morning I came back from the gym, to find his brother on my sofa with an update.

“He explained that his brother was alive and in ITU. Luckily there was no damage to his heart. I’m looking forward to visiting him soon to get a first-hand update on how he’s doing.”

After performing the lifesaving compressions, Beth started her first day as a physician associate.

Physician associates are a relatively new position in the health care system in the North East.

It involves working alongside a doctor as part of the medical team – taking a patient’s history, examinations and diagnosis.

Deepak Dwakanarath, medical director and deputy chief executive for the trust, said: “Beth is certainly the caliber of physician associate we want in our organsiation. She was faced with a distressing, unexpected situation and dealt with it brilliantly.”