A New York City EMT who tried to save the life of a 7-year-old girl who choked on her lunch says he has been suspended without pay for making an unauthorized stop, according to local media.
Qwasie Reid and a partner were transporting a nursing home patient last Wednesday, local news channel NY1 reported, when they were flagged down in Brooklyn by a man who told them that a student was choking.
Reid told the station he believed a choking girl took priority over the transport, and, against his partner's urging, administered aid to the 7-year-old, who he said had already turned blue. No one at the school was assisting the girl, he said. Reid told local TV station WABC that he cleared out the girl's mouth, put an oxygen mask on her, used a defibrillator and started CPR.
"She was blue in the face and lips. No response. Unconscious unresponsive," Reid told the station. He told local news website dnainfo.com that that the fire department arrived three to four minutes after he began CPR.
"I don't regret it," he added. "I'd do it again. If I know there's a child choking, I'm going to do my best to help her. I made a vow to save a life. If I had to jump out of the ambulance again, I'd do anything. I pray to God she feels better," Reid told WABC.