Knowing that the AED is also a Diagnostic Tool can Help Prevent this Tragedy

A Fort Bend student is on a ventilator after collapsing in gym class. While his parents maintain their bedside vigil, they wonder if more could’ve been done in the moments surrounding his collapse.

Doctors tell the family if the boy recovers, he’ll likely be in a semi-vegetative state. They don’t yet know why the boy collapsed, but they question how the school responded.

Sheila Chan is just beside herself.

“He’s not going to be the same,” she said.

The Missouri City mother has spent every day for a week at Texas Children’s Hospital hoping for a miracle for her 12-year-old son Dustin.

“He’s a good child,” Chan said.

The seventh-grade honors student was in gym class last week at Dulles Middle School when he collapsed, and his family believes precious minutes afterwards were wasted.

“Something should have been done, not just standing there,” Dustin’s uncle, Huy Tran, said.

From what they’ve been able to piece together, they say the coach called for the nurse who responded with an EPI pen. The principal also was there as they all waited for an ambulance. But even as it seemed Dustin was struggling to breathe, they say no one performed CPR or used a defibrillator that was nearby.

“I think in my heart they didn’t do what they’re supposed to do for Dustin,” Chan said.

On Tuesday, Dulles Middle School principal Michael Heinzen sent parents the following letter:

“Our hearts are deeply saddened that one of our middle school students suffered a medical emergency last week. Our main concern is for the student and his family, and our thoughts and prayers are with them during this difficult time.

“Upon initial review, it appears emergency procedures were followed in providing the student assistance until advanced medical support arrived. We will continue to collaborate with local emergency and medical personnel in an effort to maintain the safety and security of our students.

“If you have any questions, please call me at (281) 634-5750.”

With Dustin in ICU on a ventilator and with brain damage, his mother doesn’t accept that and fears it could happen again.

“I don’t want another family to go through what I go through right now. We need to save all the kids’ lives,” Chan said.

Both the nurse and the principal have visited Dustin at the hospital.

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Thursday, January 23rd, 2014 Event No Comments

Death of 13-Year Old at Temasek Junior College

Checking with the Crowdsav portal after another recent death, the nearby AEDs can be seen here. These include Bedok Community Centre and an NKF Dialysis Centre.
Temasek JC 012014

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Friday, January 17th, 2014 Event No Comments

Death of 16-Year Old at Tanglin Secondary School

Checking with the Crowdsav platform, the 2 nearest AEDs to Tanglin Secondary School ( after the recent death there ) are at Wilhelmsen Ships Service (S) Pte Ltd and Clementi Stadium.
Tanglin Sec 012014

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Friday, January 17th, 2014 Event No Comments

Another AED Not Used Contributing to Loss of Life

A senior at St. Charles North High School, Lauren was practicing with the varsity drill team in February 2008 when she collapsed on the cafeteria floor from sudden cardiac arrest.

The Laman Family

The Laman Family

Although an AED had been located just 40 feet from where she collapsed and paramedics found the device next to her when they arrived more than 12 minutes after the call, the AED was never used. Lauren was pronounced dead at the hospital.

Despite being surrounded by teammates, coaches and school staff, no one did the one thing that could have saved Lauren’s life.

“I cannot accept that,” said her mother, Mary Laman. “She should be here celebrating her birthday … . She should be celebrating Christmas.”

Mary recalled learning the Heimlich maneuver when she was in high school. While at the time she didn’t think much of the training, it wasn’t until her husband was choking years later that Mary saw the importance and was able to react.

The same could be said for teaching how to use an AED and training ongoing generations. “The results would be tremendous,” George said.

George, who worked as a paramedic for 11 years, understands the importance of time.

“It’s frustrating for paramedics to be unable to reach, treat and defibrillate a cardiac patient in time to afford them a good chance to survive,” he said. “Those precious minutes that Lauren laid on the floor without defibrillation, especially with the AED just feet away from her, makes our story especially sad. We can’t have those minutes back. We can’t have Lauren back. Hopefully, this terrible experience will help pass this bill and provide a change so others do not needlessly die.”

“My family made a promise that we would do everything in our power to prevent this from happening to anyone else,” he added.

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Wednesday, December 18th, 2013 Event No Comments

Lost Opportunity when AED not Used, so Potentially Liable

A defibrillator was 30 feet away from the 15-year old who died last weekend while playing a pickup basketball game. An autopsy revealed Antwon Whitehead died of heart failure after collapsing on the court at Carver High School on Saturday afternoon.

Georgia state law requires defibrillators in every public school. Carver High School’s is located in the training room next to the gym. The law only requires schools to have one, it doesn’t require people to use it in certain situations.

There were two coaches present when Whitehead collapsed on the side of the court. One of them performed CPR on Whitehead.

The Director of Athletics at Muscogee County School District, Dr. Gary Gibson says the coaches followed protocol.

“It’s not an easy call,” says Gibson. “These coaches first mindset is, if I can do the CPR, this is what I’ve always done, I’m comfortable with it, and so that’s what they go to.”

Defibrillators have only been in public schools since 2009 so they haven’t necessarily been at the top of everyone’s mind, especially in high-stress situations. Officials are working with schools to educate and raise awareness about the presence of the defibrillators and how to use them.

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Saturday, September 28th, 2013 Event No Comments

Another Mother Grieving

A life saving device wasn’t working at the Normandy School District, and a mother says that’s why her son is dead.

15-year-old Marquez Oliver died last month after being punched in the chest at Normandy High School while playing around with his friend.

According to the police report, the automatic defibrillator did not work when school officials tried to use it in the moments following Oliver’s collapse.

Oliver’s mother, Jackie Johnson says she’s left searching for answers, and believes her son should still be alive.

“As a parent, it hurts to know that they are still going to work every day and my son will never come home,” she said.

According to the police report, Oliver had a pulse but was unconscious. Before paramedics arrived, school officials tried using an AED to resuscitate him only to discover it wasn’t functional.

Johnson says she wants the person responsible for maintaining the device held accountable.

“Justice,” she said. “I would like to see justice.”

The district has been silent on the matter.

Schools in Missouri are not required by law to have AED devices. Just 15 states are mandated to have them.

Even as she grieves, Johnson said she had to speak out.

“This was my child, it could have been anyone else’s child,” she said. “We’ll never know what he could have been.”

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Thursday, June 6th, 2013 Event No Comments

Loss of a Bright Child

Nur Aisyah Ismail, a secondary one student from Singapore Chinese Girls’ School, had collapsed early yesterday morning according to a Berita Harian news report. She had been running the 2.4 km run presumably during morning P.E when she collapsed and went into a short fit before losing consciousness.

Nur Aisyah Ismail

A call every mum dreads
Her mother, Madam Juriah Ahamad said that she got the fateful call at 8.46am while she was still having her breakfast. The teacher in charge had conveyed the news of her daughter’s condition and informed her that they had also called for an ambulance.

Before she was able to recover from the shock, the school called a second time, this time to inform her that the paramedics were unable to discern her daughter’s pulse and that her breathing had stopped.

She and her husband then rushed to KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital where her daughter was sent too. She told Berita Harian how she was hopeful as she knew her daughter was a fighter and had a strong will to live.

A birthday tragedy
Unfortunately, doctors were unable to revive Nur Aisyah who passed away in the hospital. She had just turned 13, that very day itself and would have celebrated the joyous event with her family and twin brother.

Her father, Mr Ismail Adan, recounted how he and his wife had planned to get their children pizza and a chocolate cake as a birthday surprise along with a birthday card written in Malay that translates to: “To my special children…We are forever thankful to God for blessing our lives with the two of you…Love you very much.”

The parents are shattered and at a loss as to how this happened especially since their daughter is both active and has no history of illness.

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Wednesday, March 13th, 2013 Event No Comments