Private hospital's staff helped driver who had stroke and crashed

Seven responders from Farrer Park Hospital came to the aid of the driver on May 22. They kept him in a stable condition and monitored his heart rate until the Singapore Civil Defence Force arrived.
Seven responders from Farrer Park Hospital came to the aid of the driver on May 22. They kept him in a stable condition and monitored his heart rate until the Singapore Civil Defence Force arrived.PHOTO: FARRER PARK HOSPITAL/FACEBOOK

A driver was given a fighting chance by a contingent of doctors and nurses after he had a stroke and crashed his car in front of Farrer Park Hospital (FPH) last week.

Nurse Steve Mocsoy was knocking off at about 5.30pm on May 22 when he saw the victim's battered Toyota in Race Course Road. A female passenger was apparently unhurt.

Mr Mocsoy activated "Code Pink", the hospital's internal telephone number for responding to medical emergencies in its vicinity.

Seven responders, including two doctors, reached the scene within five minutes, said the hospital. They kept the driver in a stable condition and monitored his heart rate with an electrocardiogram until the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) arrived.

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FPH told The Straits Times that in such situations, it would activate whatever equipment was necessary to deal with the emergency as if it were happening in the hospital.

The driver, a man in his late 50s, had to be extricated as his side of the car was jammed against the road's divider. The SCDF said he was taken unconscious to Tan Tock Seng Hospital.

FPH, a 220-bed specialist private hospital located within the Connexion mixed-use development, noted that although it has a fully functional emergency department, the standard procedure in Singapore is for patients in public emergency cases to be taken to public hospitals.

It is not the first time medical emergencies have been complicated by traffic. In 2015, a woman gave birth in a stranger's car when she and her husband could not get a taxi during the morning rush hour.

When they finally reached Singapore General Hospital, medical staff cut the umbilical cord in the car.

In a Facebook post - "FPH heroes saved the day"- on Monday, FPH described its staff's actions.

Mr Mocsoy was quoted as saying: "Activating Code Pink would allow the driver to receive immediate medical care... Time is of the essence."

FPH also quoted Dr Wong Ju Ming, one of the two doctors involved, as saying: "As he (the driver) was foaming and vomiting, we had to ensure that his airway was clear so that he could breathe."

Hospitals have various codes that mobilise teams trained to handle specific emergencies, from cardiac arrest to disaster response.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 31, 2017, with the headline 'Private hospital's staff helped driver who had stroke and crashed'. Print Edition | Subscribe