California Physician Saves Lyft Driver’s Life

Dr. Nwando Olayiwola of Hercules was trying to nap in the backseat of a Lyft after a cross-country flight on Tuesday night. While crossing the Bay Bridge, she noticed the driver roll down his window.

“I was like, ‘What are you doing? It’s cold,’” Olayiwola recalled. “Then, he asked if I knew of any nearby hospitals. As a doctor, that got my antennae up.”

The driver, Mir Peerzada, later disclosed he was experiencing chest pain. Meanwhile, the Lyft was speeding along in the far left lane of the highway.

“I asked him if he thought he should pull over, and he said he would take me home first,” said Olayiwola as they continued along the highway nearing Hercules. When the doctor saw that Peerzada was becoming increasingly uncomfortable, she demanded he pull to the side of the road.

On the side of the highway, Peerzada began moaning in pain and clutching his chest. Olayiwola sprang into action.

She simultaneously called 911 while attempting to keep Peerzada calm. Recording notes in her phone, she asked for his name, date of birth and whatever details she could eke out from him. Olayiwola then called Perzada’s wife, Zuhra, to inform her of the situation.

After what felt like hours, the Rodeo-Hercules Fire Department arrived and Peerzada was treated for a heart attack at Kaiser in Richmond.

At present, Peerzada is resting at home in Modesto with his wife and three young children, but the story doesn’t end here.

Olayiwola, a general practitioner at San Francisco General Hospital, followed up with Peerzada in the days following the eventful Lyft ride. She found that Peerzada had experienced these symptoms before, but a language breakdown with his physician led to inaction.

Peerzada also revealed his past as an interpreter for the U.S. forces in Afghanistan, having arrived in Modesto on special visa with his family just one year ago.

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Source: San Francisco Chronicle | Michelle Robertson