Health Care Hero Saves Classic Client

Classic LifeCare is forever grateful to Health Care Worker Araceli, whose quick actions and fast thinking recently saved a client.

Araceli was on an outing at the PNE in Vancouver with a male client. The two were enjoying lunch when she noticed he was exhibiting signs of choking.

“At first I thought he was choking on his food and maybe had a bone or something,” says Araceli. “He was drooling and I could tell he couldn’t breathe.”

Drawing from her care and first aid training, she did a quick assessment and realized his airway was blocked. Her years of experience as a Health Care Worker guided her to be calm and focused. She proceeded to lean him forward in his wheelchair and pat his back, but quickly realized further intervention was required.

She asked him to open his mouth and could see that his dentures had come loose and were half-way down his throat.

As a crowd gathered and people started staring and yelling, she finally was able to reach into his mouth and retrieve the denture.

“When I saw that he was breathing and going to be fine, I turned to the people gathered and said, ‘He’s OK!’”

She smiles when recalling the incident but said she had trouble sleeping that night thinking back to the event.

“I was calm at the time, but felt a bit nervous about it when I was in bed that night.”

Classic LifeCare’s Executive Leader, Andrea Warren, says Araceli is a true hero for acting so quickly.

“Araceli stayed  calm and under control in this situation,” says Andrea. “People all around her were yelling and telling her what to do and she just handled the situation. She’s a real hero.”

Susan Fulton, Classic’s Clinical Leader, says Araceli is not only a dedicated Health Care Worker, but she is consistent and reliable.

“We are so proud of how she handled this particular situation, but we have always been impressed with her. We know our clients are safe in her care and we’re proud to have her as part of the Classic LifeCare family.”

Araceli has been working as a caregiver since she was 21 years old. She originally moved from the Philippines to Singapore for work, before coming to Canada. She has been with Classic LifeCare for six years.

“I like that the job is challenging and fun,” says Araceli, who particularly enjoys taking clients for outings outdoors.

When she’s not working, or catching up on sleep, Araceli enjoys spending time with her husband, going out, walking, and seeing movies.

She looks forward to a trip next year when she’ll visit Singapore and the Philippines, but is happy to work hard and help her clients in the meantime.

“I like to help and care for people. I like my work.”