AN AMBULANCE call-handler who saved a police inspector's life is up for a national award.

South Western Ambulance Service worker Olivia Molyneux has been nominated for the Patient's Choice gong at the 2019 Unsung Hero Awards.

Last August, Olivia helped save the life of Metropolitan Police inspector Dave George, after he suffered crushing chest pains while out walking on the South West Coast Path in Cornwall.

Olivia, who joined SWAST in August 2017, assessed Insp George's condition and stayed on the phone with him until paramedics reached his remote location.The 43-year-old police officer was taken to hospital, where he was diagnosed with heatstroke.


Dave and Olivia

His saviour Olivia said of being nominated for an Unsung Hero award: “I feel incredibly honoured to have been chosen by a patient, let alone shortlisted, for a national award. It’s so lovely of him to make such an effort to acknowledge my contribution towards the lifesaving care he received.

“Staff in the control room don’t often get thanked for the hard work we do 24/7, 365 days a year on behalf of the trust for patients. So, to be recognised in this way is such an encouragement to us all.”

Last October, Insp George made a special visit to the ambulance service control room in Bristol to thank Olivia in person.


Dave George out walking on the coast path.

“I knew I was in trouble,” he said. “I was on my own in a remote location, and needed help. My chest pains were quite intense. So it was a desperate situation. But the response from everyone was amazing.

“Olivia was totally exceptional. She dealt with a very difficult and challenging call in the most superb way.

“I wanted to thank her personally, because call handlers don’t tend to get the recognition they deserve.

“The kindness and calm professionalism that she showed deserved special praise. I don’t think I could have got through that hour alone without her staying on the line and talking to me.”

The winners of the Unsung Hero Awards will be announced at a ceremony in Manchester on March 1.