Medic tells of ‘miracle’

2009-05-03 00:00

THE head paramedic at the Mighty Men conference has told how he believed Angus Buchan was about to suffer a fatal heart attack after he collapsed during the Greytown gathering.

Hans Hartmann has written an account of the events of Sunday, April 26, which is now doing the rounds as an uplifting e-mail.

Hartmann told The Witness yesterday that he was 100% sure that Buchan had been saved from certain death. He described Buchan’s recovery as nothing less than a miracle.

The paramedic was contracted to provide medical cover at the event. He said Buchan had been preaching energetically, doing push-ups and running on the stage before he collapsed.

Thirty minutes later, paramedics were called to Buchan’s house. When they arrived there, Buchan was lying on his side, unresponsive, with two doctors in attendance.

“The heart monitor is already attached, a new drip running full speed,” writes Hartmann. “I ask the doctor for an update. He informs me that Angus collapsed, and glances at the monitor. One look and my worst fears are realised. The rhythm is very abnormal, with an inverted T-wave, typically found with a heart attack. I look at the blood pressure monitor — more bad news: it reads 80/40. The oxygen mask is already on, with all holes masked up to try and increase the concentration of oxygen delivered to Angus. I have seen this many times before. I know what happens next.

“These are the precious few seconds we are given to prepare for the inevitable. CPR is just seconds away. Angus has already received his Disprin and TNT spray to dilate blood vessels around the heart and assist with the breaking down of blood clots. He is deeply unconscious. I know the drill, so I pull out my drug bag and break open the resuscitation drugs we will need shortly.

“Angus is still going, barely, which gives me a chance to select the tube that will shortly go down his throat to assist in his breathing. He is still going, barely. I pull out the paddles from the heart machine, and place the gel next to it. This will be needed to deliver the shocks to his chest to attempt the re-starting of his heart.

"At this stage Angus’s blood-pressure remains low … I select another, smaller drip and add to it four ampoules of adrenaline. Sometimes this helps to increase the blood-pressure. It seems to be working. His blood-pressure climbs slowly to 100/60, still dangerously low, but better.”

Hartmann said tens of thousands of men prayed for Buchan while they were working on him. “Angus slowly regains consciousness. His family is by his side. There is no panic, no fear. I have never experienced this before. Such peace. There is no doubt in anybody’s mind that Angus is about to meet the Lord.”

Buchan was flown to hospital and Hartmann said he had no doubt that he would not be back soon, if at all.

But the next morning Hartmann was asked to set up a station under the stage as Buchan was back at the Mighty Men conference and ready to preach.

Hartmann said the cardiologist ran stress tests and blood tests, among others. The final diagnosis was that no abnormalities were detected and that there were no traces of heart damage.

Buchan was discharged three hours after arriving at the hospital.

“Either I need to go back to study, because after 25 years I have no idea what I am doing, or accept that God is capable of great miracles. Personally, I believe the latter.”

Buchan’s spokesman, Bruce Winship, said that he heard from the evangelist yesterday.

“It takes a week or two before he recovers from Mighty Men conferences, but he’s doing well.”

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