South Central Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SCAS) hosted a series of events to mark national Restart a Heart Day on Monday (16 October) – and will continue to host activities throughout the rest of October to support the campaign.
Restart a Heart Day activities in the UK are led each year by the Resuscitation Council UK with the aim of raising awareness of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and automated external defibrillators (AEDs) in the community.
SCAS staff and volunteer community first responders from South Central Ambulance Charity developed a packed diary of events to support this year’s effort.
They will teach CPR and defibrillator awareness to hundreds of young people at more than 20 schools, as well as in communities across the SCAS region.
Resources will continue to be shared across SCAS social media platforms, including a Facebook live which took place yesterday and can be revisited.
David Hamer, Operations Manager – Community Engagement and Training at SCAS, said: “Restart A Heart day gives us a much-needed opportunity to shine a spotlight on how to recognise and effectively deal with a person in cardiac arrest.
“Sudden Cardiac Arrest does not discriminate and it can affect any person of any age. It is essential that people learn from a young age how to deal with this situation and how to use an automated external defibrillator (AED).
“That is why on Restart A Heart Day and throughout the month, many of our staff and volunteers have been attending schools across the SCAS footprint delivering this vital education, and ensuring the pupils feel confident in their skills in the event they need to use them.”
Less than one in 10 people in the UK survive an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest. Two of the biggest factors contributing to this low number are that there aren’t enough people prepared to perform CRP when someone has a cardiac arrest, and that there aren’t enough defibrillators available across the UK.
There are currently 5,245 defibrillators in the South Central region registered on The Circuit and, in the last 12 months, these have been used 424 times in emergencies.
SCAS continues to support local communities who install AEDs by offering Basic Life Support Awareness Training and by visiting schools and youth groups across the region.
We can also provide signage artwork recourses and guidance for AEDs.
Email Defib@scas.nhs.uk for further information on how we can support.