Carole Toy and her mother, Bertha Chew

On December 19, my son, my 89-year-old mother, and I had just arrived at the Queen to visit a friend in the ICU. We‘d almost gotten to her room when my mom suddenly sank to the floor, unconscious. Rose Marie de Vera, sitting at the nurse’s station, rushed over and called for help. Within about 10 seconds, there were eight people working on her – doing CPR, chest compressions, pulling crash carts and then applying the paddles. One doctor took charge and gave orders, and everyone else did their job like clockwork.

We later learned she’d had a cardiac arrest. If it had happened anywhere else – even at the front of the hospital – the response time would have taken much longer. The other amazing thing is that my mom collapsed directly in front of a vacant ICU room, where they could continue working on her. She was in the ICU for a couple of days, but because Mom was insured with a different healthcare system, when stable she was transferred to another hospital for her procedure. We didn’t want to leave the Queen, though. Everyone was so kind and helpful. The fact that it happened where it did was a Christmas miracle!

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