April 19, 2018

Around the nation: Aboard Southwest Flight 1380, a retired nurse sprang into action

Daily Briefing

    Peggy Phillips, a retired nurse, and an onboard EMT on Tuesday provided CPR for a dying woman on Southwest Airlines Flight 1380 as the plane made an emergency landing in Philadelphia International Airport, in today's bite-sized hospital and health industry news from Arizona, Pennsylvania, and Washington, D.C.

    • Arizona: Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) underwent surgery for an intestinal infection related to diverticulitis at the Mayo Clinic in Arizona and is in "stable condition," according to a statement from his office. McCain in July was diagnosed with glioblastoma, an aggressive form a brain cancer (Kane, Washington Post, 4/16; Nowicki, et. al., The Republic, 4/16; Samuels, The Hill, 4/16; Reuters, 4/16; O'Brien, Politico, 4/16).

    • Pennsylvania: Peggy Phillips, a retired nurse, and an onboard EMT on Tuesday provided CPR for a dying woman on Southwest Airlines Flight 1380 as the plane made an emergency landing in Philadelphia International Airport. The flight, which took off from LaGuardia Airport, had to make the emergency landing after one of the jet engines failed and caused debris to fly through a window, opening a hole in the plane. According to passengers, a woman, Jennifer Riordan, was hit by shrapnel from the engine, and the sudden drop in pressure caused her to be partially sucked out of a window of the plane. Nearby passengers pulled her back on board, and Philips and the onboard EMT immediately provided CPR for 20 minutes—through the flight's landing in Philadelphia—but Riordan ultimately passed away from her injuries. Philips said of her effort, "I did what any registered nurse would do" (Allen et al., ABC News, 4/18; Rossman, USA Today, 4/18; Corcoran, Business Insider, 4/19).

    • Washington, D.C.: The Senate on Wednesday unanimously approved a rule change to allow Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.) to bring her newborn baby onto the Senate floor. Duckworth, who advocated for the change during her pregnancy, this month became the first U.S. senator to give birth while in office. "We vote late into the night; we vote at unpredictable times," Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) said, explaining that the rule aims to help lawmakers when they are called for last-minute votes and cannot arrange childcare (Haberkorn, Politico, 4/18).

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