A Day In The Life Of School Nurses Pamela Diksa and Tracy McMullen

School nurses Pamela Diksa and Tracy McMullen from Hodgson Vocational Technical High School in Newark, USA, had an unexpected emergency at their school. 

If it wasn’t for the ‘First State, First Shock’ program Delaware has in place, which introduces more automated external defibrillators into public and private buildings statewide, the outcome of the event may have been different.

What happened?

A 15-year-old student, Jaden Gray, was sitting on a lab stool in the Physical Science room when he suddenly fell to the ground and became unresponsive. At first it was suspected he was suffering from a seizure.

What happened when you arrived at the classroom?

Luckily in Delaware we have a school nurse in every building and as soon as we arrived we realised Jaden had stopped breathing and launched into cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) straightaway.

Does the school have access to automated external defibrillators?

The school has four AEDs so we were able to use one to shock Jaden and then attempted to get a response from him. 

Had you ever used an AED before?

No, this was our first time using the AED machine.

What was the outcome?

We were able to save his life with the use of the AED. Upon further testing it turned out Jaden had suffered from a heart attack without any warning or family history of heart disease.


Would you like to share a day in your life as a School Nurse?  

How do you go about helping improve the health and wellbeing of students? What’s your biggest challenge? What support do you need to do a better job as a School Nurse?

At Student First Aid we recognise and celebrate the good work of School Nurses. Each month we interview a dedicated School Nurse.

If you’re interested, please email help@studentfirstaid.com.au to arrange a quick and easy phone interview.

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