American Heartsaver Program
Celebration of Heroes!
American Heart Association honors
County Communications 911 Dispatchers
and Susan Baugher
Pictured Terri Birky, Gina Milko, Pat Cleary and Lisa Miller
County dispatchers honored
recognizes them for coaching 911 callers in CPR
BY KEN KOSKY
VALPARAISO -- The American Heart Association has presented American
Heartsaver awards to eight Porter County dispatchers who helped talk
911 callers through performing cardiopulmonary resuscitation while
emergency responders raced to the location.
The dispatchers are Paula Alyea, Susan Baugher, Terri Birky, Marla
Carter, Patricia Cleary, Christine Daly, Gina Miko and Lisa Miller. "They
were in a position to provide that pre-arrival medical instruction,"
said Porter County 911 Director Dave Sheibels.
"It's what the dispatchers do. "All the dispatchers who received awards coached someone through
performing CPR during 2003. Some of the patients later died. But the
Heart Association recognizes those who use CPR or an automated
external defibrillator, regardless of outcome.
Miko, who instructed a woman how to perform CPR on her husband, said
the patient later died. But she said she's played a role in saving
four or five lives during her 10 years as a dispatcher.
"It's my job," Miko said.
"I'm for it (pre-arrival medical instruction). We can help people in
a situation where they need help before the firefighters, medics or
police officers get there. "Written on the Heart Association awards are the message that they
are, "To honor the outstanding efforts of one who has improved the
chain of survival in their community."
Sheibels said Porter County, which has been using pre-arrival
medical instruction for a decade, is ahead of much of the nation in
"Why waste valuable seconds and minutes while emergency responders
are en route if somebody can give patient care over the phone?"