Hillel Yaffe Staff: In the right place at the right time

Sivan Omari, 16, fainted in the pool and drowned. Quick action by the lifeguard and CPR administered by Mimi Gelman, a kibbutz resident and Head Nurse of the Gynecology Department at Hillel Yaffe Medical Center saved his life

It started out as routine fun in the pool with friends, during which Sivan Omari, 16, practiced diving, but ended with him ventilated and sedated in the General ICU at Hillel Yaffe Medical Center. Sivan, an athlete through and through, has recently become involved in freediving. That’s what he was doing while having fun with his friends, and at some point, he fainted, something known in the literature when people dive in shallow water. He lost consciousness and sunk to the bottom of the pool. The lifeguard noticed that too much time had passed without him coming back up and immediately jumped in and pulled him out. At the same time, purely by chance, Mimi Gelman, Head Nurse of HYMC's Gynecology Department and a local resident, came to the pool. When she saw that they were pulling someone out of the water, she rushed to the site and started administering CPR. In parallel, an ambulance was called, and Sivan was rushed to the Pediatric Emergency Room at Hillel Yaffe Medical Center.


Emergency Room Director Dr. Na’ama Kochinsky and her staff as well as Dr. Kobi Daskal, a senior physician in the General Intensive Care Unit, were waiting for him in the Emergency Room. They provided him with initial treatment, after which Sivan was transferred while ventilated and sedated to Hillel Yaffe's General Intensive Care Unit.


Sivan Omari in HYMC’s Department of Pediatrics. Next to him is Mimi Gelman, who performed CPR, and his parents Meital and Alon


Dr. Boris Iskowitz, General Intensive Care Unit Director, said, “Sivan was in serious condition when he was admitted, after being stabilized in the Emergency Room, and we continued treatment, as is standard in these cases. Happily, he responded well to treatment and today was already sent for continued care in the Department of Pediatrics, where he is awake and in good condition. The fact that CPR was done quickly, and that the entire treatment chain was correct and rapid - is always critical in cases such as these.”


Mimi Gelman said, “I came to the pool by chance, after dropping my daughter off nearby. In just a few minutes I found myself performing CPR on a teen whose family I know well. I’m happy that it ended this way, and I wish Sivan good health. At the hospital, we are always given CPR workshops. Sivan Omari's case proves just how valuable and important this is - even outside the hospital.”


Meital, Sivan's mother, said, “Sivan is a strong and smart boy, an athlete, who swims, dives and surfs. A responsible young man who follows safety guidelines. The fact that he received optimal treatment from the second the serious incident occurred was important in his quick recovery. The staff here did everything to save my son, in a way that's tough to explain. Every specialist, every technology and every medication required - they gave him everything with so much dedication that I will be grateful forever. I would like to thank Mimi, the Pediatric Emergency Medicine staff, the General Intensive Care staff and everyone who was involved in making sure my son was okay.”


Sivan Omari is currently hospitalized in the Department of Pediatrics for continued care and supervision, and the hope is that he will be discharged home in the next few days.

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