Belfast Trust Nurse saves life in the sky


Janet Thornberry a Belfast Trust Nurse put her skills into action whilst on board a flight recently.Janet assisted a man with a heart condition who was suffering from severe chest pain. Janet went forward and offered her help as a critical care nurse.

Unfortunately the man was not improving and Janet put out a call for a doctor onboard. A GP came forward and Janet informed him quickly about the situation. As there was no Automated External Defibrillator (AED) or suction machine onboard the aircraft therefore they did a joint assessment quickly as the man was deteriorating. They agreed the plane had to be diverted to the nearest airport.

Janet reassured the gentleman, talked him through what was happening and kept him calm as the plane made an emergency landing. A cardiac ambulance was called ahead for and took the man to a nearby hospital.

Speaking about the incident Janet said “Nothing like an emergency in the sky to get you back in gear whilst on maternity leave!”