Dorchester first aider saves life of spectator at football match

Dorset Echo: HEROES: Pam West with Dr Phil Parslow HEROES: Pam West with Dr Phil Parslow

A FIRST aider from Dorchester helped save the life of a spectator at a football match.

St John Ambulance volunteer Pam West was among a team of first aiders who were on the scene when an elderly man suffered a heart attack during a home match for AFC Bournemouth.

She was the charity’s duty officer at the match and rushed to tend to the man with fellow St John volunteers Julie Lane and David Wray-Cook.

They found the patient in cardiac arrest and moved him to a safe, flat area, away from the crowd, before Pam gave life saving chest compressions to try to get his heart going.

Julie called for assistance from NHS paramedics who were also at the game and they were also assisted by Dr Phil Pardslow, a consultant paediatrician who was acting as a crowd doctor at the match, and his colleague Dr Mike Masding.

Pam, who also works at the Dorchester hospital as a paediatric sister, said: “Having been involved in a successful resuscitation outside of the hospital setting leaves you feeling good and all the training and hard work is worth it.

“I have not been involved with an adult cardiac arrest for a few years but I was able to transfer my paediatric skills to the adult patient, with an excellent result.”

Dr Parslow added: “It’s been a long while since I resuscitated an adult, too. For me, being in an unfamiliar situation, it was great having Pam there, who I am used to working with in caring for very sick patients – although usually they are much younger.”

The volunteers continued helping the patient and assisted paramedics once NHS staff arrived a few minutes later.

Dr Parslow said: “We had a great team on the day – the St John Ambulance crew, NHS paramedics, my fellow crowd doctor, Dr Masding and me.

“Everyone played a vital role in saving the man’s life.”

For information on how to volunteer with St John Ambulance, phone 08700 10 49 50 or visit


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