911 dispatcher honored for call about dog biting baby
Patricia Ebinger's "calm, professional and life-preserving services" saved the child, who suffered near-fatal injuries in the January attack
The Intelligencer, Doylestown, Pa.
BUCKS COUNTY, Pa. — The instructions from a Bucks County 911 operator likely saved the life of a 13-month-old baby attacked by her family's dog earlier this year.
On Wednesday, Bucks County Commissioners and Perkasie police Chief Steven Hillias said Patricia Ebinger's "calm, professional and life-preserving services" saved the child, who suffered near-fatal injuries in the January attack.
"You demonstrated a level of excellence that we hope all county employees strive to achieve," Commissioner Vice Chairman Charlie Martin said at the commissioners' meeting in Doylestown.
The dog attack on the 400 block of Grandview Avenue left the baby with multiple bite wounds. A neighbor of the family called 911 at about 6:30 p.m. on Jan. 30.
Ebinger gave initial first aid instructions to the neighbor, including clearing the baby's airway, but the infant's condition worsened from blood loss.
"(Ebinger) reached through the phone to calm her down and said, 'This is what we're going to do,'" Hillias said during the meeting.
For the remainder of the 13-minute call, Ebinger instructed the neighbor to slow the bleeding until an ambulance arrived on the scene.
As the ambulance was on route to Grand View Hospital in Sellersville, the baby went into cardiac arrest.
First responders were able to resuscitate the baby with CPR, which Hillias said might have been unsuccessful if the blood loss had been more severe.
"I firmly believe that Trish's actions preserved enough blood in the baby so that the CPR worked," Hillias said.
"Trish truly saved a life that day."
Martin said during the meeting the child was transferred to the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia soon after arriving at Grand View in critical condition where she "improved and responded well to medical treatment."
Police said in January the dog attacked the child and her mother in what appeared to be a tragic accident.
An unidentified motorist suffered a serious leg injury after getting out of vehicle to stop the attack just before the 911 call.
The names of the family, neighbor and motorist have not been publicly released.
©2019 The Intelligencer, Doylestown, Pa.