Friday, March 22, 2013

Athletic Trainer Helps Save High School Referee with AED

Watch the video of the Athletic Trainer reunited with the referee who's life she helped save on Thursday, February 7th during an exciting overtime Girls' Basketball game at Eastchester High School in NY. Neil Berniker, teacher, coach and high school referee in the Bronx, suddenly collapsed and hit the floor while officiating the game. Jason Karol, the school's Athletic Director, along with Ellen Bastoni, the school's Certified Athletic Trainer, came to his rescue.

"As soon as I ran over, I saw he wasn't breathing and I yelled to call 911," Karol said. "I told the [athletic] trainer to get the AED because he was gasping for air but he wasn't breathing." Karol, a first year athletic director, began CPR until Bastoni returned with the LIFEPAK 500 AED (Automated External Defibrillator).

Once the AED was connected to the referee, it advised a shock. Incredibly, through the efforts of Karol, Bastoni and a parent bystander, Berniker was successfully revived in front of the 200 people watching solemnly from the stands. "We saw his eyes open and he started breathing again," Karol said. "He was confused and I just held his hand until the EMT's got there. He didn't know what happened."

Once EMT's arrived, Berniker was put on oxygen and transported to the intensive care unit. It was reported that he is recovering well, and that he was up and walking and making jokes by the next day.

Eastchester has 23 AEDs located strategically throughout their buildings. Interestingly, the week before the referee collapsed during the basketball game, the placement of the AEDs was reviewed and the one used to save Berniker's life was placed in a more accessible location in the gym so that it could be utilized after normal school hours.

Sports Health is a leading provider of AEDs to schools and athletic organizations across the country. The AED Program at Eastchester High School was implemented with the help of a School Health/Sports Health Representative. If you would like more information, please contact us and one of our knowledgeable representatives will get in touch with you.

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