May 18, 2016
Burnham-On-Sea care worker receives award after saving man's life

An employee at a care home in Burnham-On-Sea who saved the life of a young man by carrying out vital CPR has been honoured with a top award this week.

Rob Lawrence, who works at Holly Tree Cottage residential home in Berrow Road, Burnham-On-Sea, has been named 'Outstanding Care Worker' in the 2016 Care Awards.

The judges heard how Rob, a carer with Homes Caring for Autism, came to the help of a young man with epilepsy and a heart condition who collapsed and was unconscious and not breathing.

Rob quickly started life-saving cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) on the man and continued it until an ambulance arrived.

The young man's grateful mother, who wishes to remain anonymous, said: "Staff rushed to the aid of my son when his epilepsy alarm was triggered."

"He was found to be in a more serious state than was usual and the emergency services were quickly called who advised CPR to be administered."

"Robert quickly started CPR and continued to do so even though other staff offered to take over."

"When the paramedics arrived they found his heart needed to be restarted. Robert insisted on accompanying him to hospital, where he stayed with myself and other members of staff until later in the afternoon when he knew my son was comfortable, even though he had been on a night shift."

"The consultant later told me that it was the rapid and continued CPR response that ensured not only that my son's life was saved but no permanent brain damage was suffered."

The mother, who submitted an award nomination for Rob, added that she had been touched by the response she had received when she thanked Rob for his reactions.

"He replied that the best reward had been being able to see her son being his usual self, day to day, without any change, a sweet innocence to the gravity of it all."

She added: "It made me realise again, what an exceptional individual he is and what outstanding commitment he showed that morning and continues to show to all the individuals in his care."

Rob's line manager, David Small, at the Homes Caring for Autism group, which is based in Weston and supports up to 60 people with autism and learning disabilities, told "As a company that specialises in supporting people with complex behavioural and health needs we must acknowledge that there is always a risk that the health of any of the people we support could be compromised whilst in our care."

"However, I don't believe any of us could have imagined being in a situation of this magnitude."

"It is with sincere thanks and a deep appreciation that we recognise Rob's quick thinking and lifesaving actions that day. Our gratitude and praise is certainly echoed by others, including the young man's parents and the health and social care professionals who have been involved throughout."

"There is no doubt that his decisive actions saved a life that day and we all thank him for being so instrumental in his rescue."

Rob has been presented with a trophy and a rose bowl during a gala evening at Wellsprings Leisure Centre in Taunton.

Pictured: L-R - Richard Smith with Rob Lawrence holding rose bowl and Shirley Smith holding Rob's trophy


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