Photos taken in The Kadazan Dusun Cultural Association Sabah (KDCA) during Kaamatan or Pesta Kaamatan (harvest festival) celebrated on 30 and 31 of May annually in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah.

Emergency Aid for a Fainted Elderly Person at KDCA

Earlier, I went to KDCA for a stroll and as I was returning, I noticed an elderly person who had fainted by the side of the road. People around were helping the person sit on the ground, and there was a bewildered middle-aged man frantically patting the inside of the elderly person’s right elbow. Some people thought the elderly person had a stroke and wanted to poke a needle to remove blood. Overall, the atmosphere at the scene did not seem urgent at all. Even the police officers at the forefront did not participate in the emergency response. At that time, a bunch of onlookers were gathered, completely unaware that the elderly person’s life could be at risk. At that moment, I couldn’t quite figure out what was happening. A friend beside me said, “Why don’t you go and help? Aren’t you a doctor?” I thought to myself, “I am a traditional Chinese medicine practitioner, not a Western medicine doctor. If something goes wrong and the elderly person dies under my help, will the family hold me responsible? Moreover, isn’t the ambulance on its way?”

In any case, thoughts of lacking confidence flashed through my mind, but I still decided to take action. I first went to the friends and relatives of the elderly person and said, “His feet need to be elevated to allow him to lie flat so that blood can circulate back to his heart.” Although I said it, they seemed to have not understood or had any intention to follow through. Then, a lady nearby immediately handed me a small bottle of medicated oil. Without much hesitation, I directly applied the medicated oil to acupoints such as the Renzhong (the midpoint between the nose and upper lip), the heart, lungs, and brain acupoints in both ears. I gently pressed the Neiguan acupoint on the elderly person’s cold hands five or six times. Miraculously, in less than ten seconds, the elderly person opened his eyes, took a breath, and regained a clear consciousness. He was even able to speak to others. Afterwards, I lightly pressed the Neiguan acupoint again and pressed a few times on the Zusanli acupoint on both feet. The entire emergency process took only one or two minutes, and I managed to bring the person back from the brink of death. As I write this story, I find it incredible myself.

If you ask me why I hesitated for a moment before rendering aid, I honestly can’t answer. This was my first time providing emergency aid, and I had absolutely no experience. Moreover, this was the first time I used traditional Chinese medicine methods for emergency treatment. What surprised me even more was how everyone at the roadside remained surprisingly calm, and no one extended a helping hand.

This emergency aid can be considered a fleeting moment. I never imagined that the ambulance never arrived in the end, and the elderly person and their family quickly got into a car and left. However, tonight was truly a unique experience, and I am grateful to have been given the opportunity to save a life. The ancient emergency methods I had seen in classrooms and books were unexpectedly put to use, and the results were so remarkable that you wouldn’t believe it unless you witnessed it firsthand.