Basingstoke worker saves life of 105-year-old woman

First published in News Basingstoke Gazette: Photograph of the Author by , Chief Reporter

A SUPPORT worker's quick actions saved the life of a 105-year-old woman.

Chane Furlong, who is based at Care UK's Basingstoke office, in Basing View, was preparing a meal for Phyllis Chaplin when a piece of food became lodged in the pensioner's throat.

The 20-year-old leapt into action, dislodging the food and calling the emergency services.

She 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.”

Chane was worried because of Mrs Chaplin's age, but fortunately, by the time the ambulance arrived and paramedics examined Mrs Chaplin, the obstruction had gone.

They spent time checking the OAP, who lives in Camberley, to ensure she was okay and that there was no damage or further obstruction.

Chane, from Farnborough, said: “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 is still a strong walker.”

Doreen McVicar, Mrs Chaplin's daughter, arrived at the house while there ambulance crew was there.

She praised Chane's efforts in preventing her mother from choking to death, and said: “Chane 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 Chane was able to keep a cool head and do what needed to be done.”

Jennifer Flowerdew, care coordinator at Care UK's Basingstoke office, added: “Chane 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 Chane's presence of mind it could have been a very different story.”

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