As a nurse, your work tends to follow you–on vacation, at the grocery store, at the playground. And occasionally, on a plane, which is what happened last week for one nurse who came to a fellow passenger’s rescue!
An emergency room nurse from the University of North Carolina was on a normal Southwest Airlines flight from San Francisco to Phoenix when a fellow passenger went into labor just after takeoff. While the flight quickly became the opposite of normal, the nurse, who helped deliver the baby, said it wasn’t very different than what she sees every day at work.
“I think, especially with working in the ER you just automatically go, ‘That’s what we do,'” nurse Victoria Bissette told Raleigh news station ABC11. “We don’t expect anything that comes in here. We just automatically go into the room or back to the patient on the plane and we just help. It’s what we do.”
Bissette also revealed that the situation was particularly special because she and her husband are expecting their first child next summer.
Los Angeles Fire Department Captain Jaime Moore reported that both mother and child are “doing absolutely well” after the incident. The birth happened shortly after takeoff and the plane was diverted to Los Angeles, where air traffic controllers quickly cleared a spot for the plane to land.
Los Angeles Fire Department spokesman Erik Scott praised the nurse for her work in the air.
“LAFD praises an ER RN that assisted the mother in giving birth prior to our arrival,” Scott said, according to KTLA 5 in Los Angeles.
On the plane, the captain announced the birth over the loudspeaker, prompting applause from the 111 passengers onboard. The flight continued to its original Phoenix destination after a delay of 2 1/2 hours.
Nurses, have you ever had to come to someone’s aid outside of work? How about on an airplane? Share your stories in the comments below.