Patient thanks life-saving ambulance crews after cardiac arrest

Date: 29 January 2019

Patient Meet up Emily

A patient whose serious heart attack caused her cardiac arrest has thanked the life-saving ambulance crews.


Patricia Nicholls, 80, had been helping teach at her daughter’s dance school on a September morning and on the way home to Cheshunt, Herts, experienced chest pain.


She pulled over into a pub car park in Bishop’s Stortford and her daughter phoned 999.


Mrs Nicholls said: “I remember sitting in the car waiting for my daughter to come out of the bank and all of a sudden I felt unwell.


“I tried to get out of the car but didn't have any energy. I had pains everywhere in my stomach, back arms, chest and never thought I was having a heart attack as the pain was everywhere."


Paramedic Emily Gibney said: “We arrived and found Patricia in the car, quickly diagnosed a myocardial infarction and got her onto the back where she went into cardiac arrest.


“We performed CPR and shocked Patricia once and minutes after she was awake and talking to us again.


“It was a very surreal job and the first of its kind for both myself and Tony [student paramedic].”


Patricia was taken to Lister Hospital in Stevenage for further treatment and is now doing very well at home. 


Patricia took in a bag of treats and a thank you card into Harlow ambulance station just before Christmas, and then was able to meet the team who saved her life a couple of weeks later.


She said: “It was a really lovely thing to be able to do. I was very touched they gave up their time off to meet with us, as I know time is precious.


“It was lovely to meet them and thank them all in person. I know without their care I would not be here today. 


“They do a fantastic job and are quickly criticised when things aren't to one’s satisfaction, but very rarely commended for the life-saving work they do.  I personally do not think they get the accolade for the work they do.”


You could be joining Emily, Tony and others on the frontline helping patients like Patricia. Follow our #beseeningreen campaign online or visit


  • Summary:

    A patient whose serious heart attack caused her cardiac arrest has thanked the life-saving ambulance crews.