Caregiver having lunch, ends up saving a life

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Amanda Cooley and several other caregivers rushed to the aid of a man who was choking.

A man who suddenly was in need of few Heimlich thrusts to go with his lunch, recently discovered there was quick help available at the Cedar City Hospital Café.

Patients, their loved ones, and caregivers were all enjoying lunch in the Cedar City Hospital café dining room recently when Cami Hess, a scheduler in the Imaging Department, noticed a gentleman who appeared to be choking. Cami, along with Natalie Persons, specialty care coordinator, and Amanda Cooley, house supervisor, immediately rushed over to the man.

“Amanda quickly asked the man if he was OK, and he indicated he wasn’t,” says Jody Johnson, another house supervisor. “She then wrapped her arms around him, gave two quick Heimlich thrusts, and was able to dislodge the obstruction and saved the man’s life. The man was there eating with his family, so Cami and Natalie comforted the children while Amanda ensured the gentleman was OK.”

“This all happened within a matter of seconds,” Jody says. “Amanda, Cami, and Natalie’s quick thinking and skills are a testament to the importance of knowing basic CPR and First Aid and knowing it well enough that it becomes second nature. In an emergency, those seconds count. As house supervisors, we strongly encourage everyone to learn and know basic CPR, including the Heimlich maneuver. Life-threatening incidents are like that sometimes—out of the blue, nothing going on, just an average lunch on an average day—and so knowing those skills are powerful tools to know and have ready.”

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