A 20-year-old support worker who saved a 105 year-old lady from choking has been praised today by her employers, Care UK, and by the lady’s daughter.
Chané Furlong, from Farnborough, had prepared Mrs Phyllis Chaplin’s dinner when a piece of food became lodged in the 105-year-old’s throat. Chané leapt into action, dislodging the food and calling the emergency services. Chané said: “I had just given Mrs Chaplin her dinner and was writing up her notes when I heard her coughing. I asked her if she was ok, but I then heard the tell-tale crackling sound.
“I got her to the sink and started the back-slapping procedure; she was sick but still choking. I called 999 and the operator told me to keep slapping her back. After a while, she told me it was time to do the Heimlich manoeuvre. I was worried because of Mrs Chaplin’s age. Fortunately, the ambulance arrived and by the time they examined Mrs Chaplin the obstruction had gone, and they spent time checking she was ok and there was no damage or further obstruction.
“I was a bit shocked after it was all over, but I guess my training just kicked in. The ambulance crew were very nice and said I had done very well. I was just pleased to be able to help Mrs Chaplin. She is an exceptional lady. She looks 20 years younger than her age and she is still a strong walker.”
Mrs Chaplin’s daughter, Mrs Doreen McVicar, who also lives in Camberley, arrived at the house while the ambulance men were there. She said: “Chané showed great presence of mind and really does deserve full praise. Like many people, I have attended life-saving talks and you always hope that you will be able to do it should the time come – I am just so pleased that Chané was able to keep a cool head and do what needed to be done.”
Jennifer Flowerdew, Care Coordinator at Care UK’s Basingstoke office, said: “Chané did amazingly well. She has only been a support worker for a year, but she saw what needed to be done and she did it. It is very impressive and we are all delighted that Mrs Chaplin had no problems following the incident. Without Chané’s presence of mind it could have been a very different story.”