At 10:13 this morning a frantic call came in to United Hatzalah’s emergency hotline, 1221, about an unconscious 18 month old child. Using its GPS-based control center United Hatzalah dispatchers located volunteer Eli Beer (also the organizations founder and president) as the nearest medic. Eli raced down the stairs to his vehicle. As he reached the bottom few rain slicked steps he slipped and went down hard. Realizing that a child’s life was on the line Eli hobbled to his car despite the excruciating pain that felt like a certain break and drove to the scene. 3 other United Hatzalah volunteers had already made it to the special needs day care clinic to treat the still convulsing cyanotic young child. Eli assisted with the treatment and the gathering of pertinent medical information as well as helping calm down the frantic mother and concerned staff.
After the ambulance evacuated the child, Eli slumped to the floor and asked one of the United Hatzalah volunteers to look at his wounded ankle. By now the ankle had ballooned to more than double in size and was turning an angry shade of red. A United Hatzalah ambulance was dispatched to the same location and was rapidly on-scene. The crew helped Eli to the ambulance when another call came through of a multi-vehicle accident on nearby Route 443. Eli got on the radio and over the objection of the ambulance crew chief, asked the dispatcher to release the ambulance from his transport case and send them to the accident. The dispatcher agreed and Eli waited at the day care center for the crew to return. After treating and stabilizing the 3 lightly injured victims of the car crash who were evacuated by other ambulances the United Hatzalah crew returned to Eli. Eli’s treatment by volunteers of the organization that he helped found continued at the hospital when he was treated by United Hatzalah volunteer and orthopedic specialist Dr. Michael Herman.
With his injured leg fully casted and pain medications taking the edge off the pain Eli wheeled himself to the pediatric emergency room on the sixth floor. There he met Eliya G. and his grateful mother. Eliya was awake, alert and in good spirits despite the maze of tubes and wires there to treat and monitor him. Eli commented “Seeing little Eliya is the greatest relief that I have for my pain and gives me the greatest sense of accomplishment and fulfillment. All Hatzalah volunteers act like soldiers, displacing personal pain and discomfort for the sake of their lifesaving mission I respect and applaud them all.“
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