University of Northampton student helped save heart attack victim’s life

University of Northampton student paramedic Tom Hoy, with Simon Bakewell and his wife Alison.
University of Northampton student paramedic Tom Hoy, with Simon Bakewell and his wife Alison.

The quick actions of a University of Northampton student paramedic helped save the life of a man who suffered a heart attack while out walking with his family.

And on Thursday, 42-year-old Simon Bakewell, of Leicester, had the chance to meet Tom Hoy and the rest of the East Midlands Ambulance Service (EMAS) crew to thank them for their swift assistance.

Mr Bakewell suffered the heart attack in January, just weeks after he had a heart transplant after a viral infection had damaged his heart.

His wife Alison dialed 999 and a fast response vehicle with paramedic Ruth Thompson and Mr Hoy arrived within six minutes of the call being picked up in the EMAS control room.

Mr Hoy, 21, said: “Simon was not breathing and was in cardiac arrest so I started cardio-pulmonary resuscitation (CPR). He arrested again on the way to hospital but we got him back.

“It is great to hear that he has made such a good recovery and to be part of the team that made such a difference.”

Chef Mr Bakewell is continuing to make a good recovery and plans to return to work part-time in August.

He said: “I was able to thank the hospital staff before leaving but it’s different with ambulance crews – you don’t get to see them again once they’ve got you to hospital.”

Mr Hoy is graduating this summer from his two year Paramedic Science course.

He said: “I had looked into becoming a professional golfer and also into studying sports science but during my year out I had an observer shift with an ambulance crew from Loughborough Ambulance Station and that was that.

“The course at Northampton is very well regarded by paramedics and related professionals. The hands-on element really means that we graduate ready to put the theory into practice.”

Thomas McNally, senior lecturer in paramedic science at The University of Northampton said: “The course is very intensive and combines theory with time spent out in the field with experienced paramedics.

“By the end of our course the students are very much working as part of the team with their mentors in a supervisory role. But Tom did a great job and we are very proud of him. It is always fantastic to meet patients you have helped save afterwards – it’s one of the best parts of the job.”