Young nurse ‘cool and calm’ in tragic event

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A nursing student who works at Greenslopes Private Hospital has been praised for her attempts to save an elderly man who suffered a fatal collapse on a footpath.

Taylor Kett was driving home from a placement shift at the Brisbane hospital when she saw the stricken man.

“I saw this person on the ground and he was face down and there were two other people standing over him. I thought it would be a good idea to turn around and help,” the 20-year-old said.

“I tried to find his pulse but he wasn’t breathing. One lady was telling me not to touch him but I was thinking the airway is more important than the spine – I knew what I needed to do.”

Ms Kett performed cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) for five minutes before the ambulance arrived, and asked bystanders to collect towels as the patient had lost a lot of blood. She then continued CPR for another 20 minutes with three other people.

“It was such a different environment. I’ve done all this training but I’ve usually got all the senior nurses and doctors telling me what to do. This was different because I was the one in charge. But I had the confidence to know what to do,” said Ms Kett, who is in the second year of a nursing degree.

One of the Queensland Ambulance Service paramedics who arrived praised Ms Kett’s conduct in trying to help the man, who sadly passed away at the scene.

“There were multiple other bystanders on scene who Taylor kept calm, informed and gave direction to,” the paramedic said.

“Taylor has clearly been taught well. She was cool, calm and collected throughout the incident.”

Ms Kett said it has reinforced her passion for nursing, and she hopes to move into paediatrics or midwifery when she graduates in late 2021.

She paid tribute to the team of nurses and doctors she has been learning from at Greenslopes during her studies. 

“They’re incredible and amazing. The whole team has been so supportive, it’s just such a nice group of people to work with,” she said.

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