NHS 111 Health Advisor inspired to teach CPR by first-hand family experience

14 October 2022

Michelle Llewellyn

NHS 111 Health Advisor Michelle Llewellyn

NHS 111 Health Advisor Michelle Llewellyn will be returning to her former secondary school to teach CPR – a skill that saved two of her family members.

Michelle and fellow NHS 111 Health Advisor Imran Patel are among the team of Yorkshire Ambulance Service staff and volunteers who will visit Thornhill Community Academy in Dewsbury on Friday 14 October to teach the life-saving technique to dozens of students.

Michelle’s mum survived a cardiac arrest in hospital aged 66 and another family member, who was 39 at the time, was saved when his wife did CPR after he collapsed at home.

“My mum has chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and had only been in hospital for a couple of hours when she had her cardiac arrest,” recalled Michelle, of who worked at Thornhill Community Academy as a dinner lady before she joined NHS 111 in Wakefield in 2015. “Had it have happened earlier in the day she would have been at home with my dad and I really don’t think the outcome would have been the same.

“My other family member was only 39 when he had his cardiac arrest with no real warning; luckily his wife was there to start CPR and he survived.

“I have since taught all my family members CPR and I find it really rewarding to go into local schools and give students the training they need to save a life. You just don’t know when you might need to use it.”

Thornhill Community Academy Science Teacher, Surraya Patel, has been organising regular CPR sessions for students with the support of Imran and Michelle.

She said: “The training has a huge impact on students. As a school we know how important it is to have CPR training. We are giving every student a chance to learn the skill before they leave.”

On Friday, as part of the Restart a Heart Day campaign, the Yorkshire Air Ambulance will be hosting workshops at the school which will present the charity with a cheque for £500.

The Mayor and Mayoress of Kirklees, Cllr Masood Ahmed and his daughter, Iram Ahmed will also visit Thornhill Community Academy to see the CPR training in action.

Cllr Ahmed said: “It is great to see these invaluable life-saving skills being taught to our students here in Kirklees. You never know when they might be needed, and a cardiac arrest could happen to somebody and when you least expect it.

“I would encourage schools to sign up to the Restart A Heart campaign as the skills can make a difference and save somebody’s life.”

Produced by: Corporate Communications Department