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Clare’s Story

Clare has been fit and healthy her whole life. She was just getting back into exercise after an injury when the unexpected happened…

I’ve got a very active lifestyle. When I was 20 I won the world junior triathlon championships and represented Australia in world cross country championships.  As a national level runner, I had started on the senior world cup series until a hamstring injury stopped my career.

I was trying to just get back to one swim a week, just for a bit of fitness, so I took myself to the swimming pool. In probably just under twenty minutes, I suffered a cardiac arrest. I had no warning it was going to happen because I would never expect that to happen to me.

Someone from the public found me floating face down. The lifeguard did CPR until the ambulance came which was within five minutes and they defibrillated me six times before I was transported to hospital without a heart beat. I was clinically dead for 40 minutes. I’m still here because of the Ambulance Victoria paramedics. They were amazing and so was the guy that found me floating in the pool. If it wasn’t for him, you know, I wouldn’t be here either.

I was lucky enough that there was an auto pulse on board the ambulance, the compressions that the machine was doing to my chest kept the blood circulating in my body.

I found out that Ambulance Victoria has one of the best cardiac arrest survival rates in the world. My membership with Ambulance Victoria covered all my costs.

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