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Heart attack patient praises CareFlight’s lifesaving care

As a sailor, and now former patient, Hervey Bay boatie Danny Chapman knows first-hand how critical the local RACQ CareFlight Rescue helicopter service is to his community.

For the last decade the Hervey Bay Boat Club has contributed in excess of $50,000 each year from community events, raffles and bingo games to help fund local CareFlight missions.
 
That vital funding was put to good use, when on 25 February one of the Boat Club’s Directors, Danny Chapman, was going about his morning routine when he experienced the initial symptoms of a potentially fatal heart attack.

“I was feeling fine – I went for my morning walk to collect the paper and I only made it about 150 metres down the street before I felt a strong pain in my jaw,” the 61-year-old said.

“I had no idea that jaw pain was a symptom of heart attack – but I was very, very lucky that my wife recognised the warning signs and called the ambulance straight away.”

Mr Chapman was admitted to Hervey Bay Hospital after his cardiac condition worsened.
 
The Sunshine Coast RACQ CareFlight Rescue helicopter airlifted the ailing patient to Nambour General Hospital, where he underwent immediate specialist cardiac treatment.

“When I was collected from the hospital, I can remember joking with some of the CareFlight crew whether my trip qualified me for frequent flyer points – we all had a bit of a laugh,” said Mr Chapman.

Mr Chapman is one of 102 patients who have been airlifted by CareFlight from the Fraser Coast region since 1 July 2014.
 
He’s now asking fellow Fraser Coast locals to also get behind the service that helped save his life.
 
“Truly, I can’t thank them enough – everyone did their job so well.”

CareFlight North Coast Fundraising Manager Angela Miles said Mr Chapman’s case highlighted how the community rescue helicopter service helps so many patients in a variety of different circumstances.

“We’re thrilled to hear that Danny has recovered so well, so quickly,” said Ms Miles.

“The Hervey Bay Boat Club has been such a strong supporter for so many years and its support has helped save Danny’s life.

“We are the Fraser Coast's rescue helicopter, and  we service an area that includes up to 100 nautical miles out to sea – so whether you’re walking down the street, or fishing off Fraser, be assured that we’re here if you need us.”