A nurse who has been treating COVID-19 patients during the pandemic jumped in to help state troopers save a man’s life after a crash in Boston Sunday night, officials said.
At about 11:30 p.m., Alexa Sequeira was driving home from a 12-and-a-half hour shift at Winchester Hospital’s emergency room when she saw a crash on Interstate 93, she said.
A man had slammed his car into a road divider while traveling on the southbound side of the road, State Police said. Troopers had already broken the man’s window and removed him from the car when Sequeira pulled over to help.
“I saw cruisers on the side of the road and as I got closer, I noticed a car had crashed into the median and there was a lot of shattered glass around it,” Sequeira said. “Two officers were standing over a man who was laying on his back on the ground and he had blood coming from his head, so I stopped and said I was a nurse."
When Sequeira found he didn’t have a pulse, she began performing CPR and other life-saving measures with assistance from Troopers Joe Cordes, Miguel McGovern, and Joe Page. Sequeira said an off-duty EMT also stopped and helped her give the man chest compressions.
He started breathing again about eight minutes after Sequeira had pulled over, she said. By the time emergency medical personnel arrived at the scene, he was alert and making jokes.
“He told us his name, social security number, and that he had been coming from Somerville,” Sequeira said. “When I told him he could have been dead, he said ‘Wow, really? I feel pretty great.’"
The man was taken to Boston Medical Center. State Police said he is expected to make a full recovery.
Karen Keaney, Sequeira’s supervisor at Winchester Hospital, said she wasn’t surprised when she heard Sequeira had stopped to help.
“Alexa is such a wonderful person," Keaney said. “She is kind and compassionate, and she takes a great sense of pride in what she does. She views nursing as a sense of duty as well as her passion, so she’s a wonderful nurse.”
Sequeira has been a nurse for four years and was previously an EMT. She said this wasn’t the first time she has pulled over to help someone who had been in an accident. Six months ago, she provided first aid to three elderly women who had been in an rollover on Interstate-90 in Framingham.
“As a nurse, I’ve been taught to lend my services to help those who need it,” Sequeira said.
Sequeria said most of the people she has treated in the emergency room at Winchester Hospital during the pandemic have been COVID-19 patients.
“A special thanks goes out from the Massachusetts State Police to Ms. Sequeira, another in a long line of great nurses who are contributing to public health in so many different ways during this pandemic,” State Police wrote on Facebook.