For Immediate Release:
Fire Chief Jenifer Collins-Brown
27 High Street
Topsfield, MA 01983
On Wednesday July 1, 2020, at 5:06 pm, the North Shore Regional Communications Center received an emergency call from staff at a group home in Topsfield reporting an adult client that was choking. Telecommunicators at the Northshore Regional Emergency Communications Center (NRECC) gather information from the caller and advised FD and PD units that the patient had a complete airway obstruction. The call-taker gave instructions over the phone to the staff so that they could attempt to remove an airway obstruction. Topsfield Police Officer Shawn Frost arrived on scene one minute later and found staff now performing CPR on the resident who was unconscious at which point he immediately took over care from staff. Lt. Boyle (Paramedic) and Firefighter Hallinan (EMT) arrived one minute later in Ambulance-1 and were able to remove the obstruction using advanced airway equipment. The patient began breathing on his own and was given supplemental oxygen. It is clear that without the intervention of staff, Officer Frost, Lt. Boyle, and Firefighter Hallinan that the outcome of this call would have been quite different. The importance of having medically trained responders on duty and staffed to perform the highest level of prehospital care cannot be over emphasized. Our thoughts are with the patient and those who cared for him and we hope for a speedy recovery. “Early recognition of a problem and high-quality CPR are so critical to the chain for survival for many victims, it is important that the public is trained to do these skills,” said Topsfield Fire Chief Jen Collins-Brown. If you are interested in first aid or CPR training, feel free to contact the Topsfield Fire Department.