HEDON may soon get its own defibrillator machine for use in emergency situations in cases of cardiac arrest in the town centre.
The public access defibrillator machine has been provided as a result of Lifestyle project run in the summer of 2012 by girls at Inman’s Primary School. A summer of fundraising by the Helpful Hands Lifestyle Group was topped up by a donation from the Water Yorkshire Community Fund leading to the purchase of the £1,750 defibrillator.
There then followed a whole period of lengthy negotiation, in which Hedon Town Council leant a hand, to try to find a convenient location for the device and its high-visibility cabinet in the town centre. The device needs its own electricity supply and needs to be easily accessible and yet secure from persistent attempts at vandalism (although the cabinet is described as vandal proof).
The decision on the final location of the defibrillator has still to be made, but wherever it ends up, it will potentially help save lives.
According to the Community HeartBeat Trust, following a cardiac arrest the chances of survival decreases by 23% per minute. It is therefore very important medical treatment starts as soon as possible. An automated external defibrillator (AED) should be available wherever medical treatment is more than 5 minutes away. In practical terms this means the whole of the UK.
Upon ringing 999 in an emergency the caller is told the access code for the cabinet and the defibrillator can be used by anyone who witnesses a cardiac arrest. The AED talks to you and tells you how to use the device. It is easy to use by an inexperienced person. It registers the patient’s heart rhythms and will only allow the delivery of a shock when it is needed (see useful YouTube demonstration).
Community Heartbeat say that survival rates increase by 5% by using CPR alone; this rises to 50% with defibrillation.
The campaign for the Hedon defibrillator may have started two years ago, but the achievements of the Helping Hands group of 2012 still deserve to be recognised today. The Hedon Blog hopes to bring you the good news of the successful installation of the new defibrillator very soon!
NOTE: Hedon and area has an active Community First Responders scheme, see the article: Hedon Community First Responders