Heart of the matter
Reporter: Ken Bennett
Date online: 02 April 2014
SADDLEWORTH will set an example to the rest of Greater Manchester with the introduction of life-saving defibrillators.
The news followed North-West Ambulance chiefs’ claim that villagers have only a two per cent chance of recovery from cardiac arrest unless seen by a paramedic within eight minutes.
Oldham Council and Saddleworth parish councillor Alan Roughley, who is leading the pilot scheme to install the devices at key points in every village, says they would be available to the public anytime.
He added: “If a defibrillator is available, the survival rate goes up to 50 per cent. The North-West Ambulance Service is anxious to set up a pilot scheme as an example for the rest of Greater Manchester.”
The service has offered 10 free defibrillators if the community can find suitable sites and pay the few hundred pounds needed for the cabinets and installation.
After meeting the paramedic setting up the scheme, Councillors Roughley, Derek Hefferan, Garth Harkness, John McCann and John Hudson have pledged a part of their ward project money from the 2013-14 budget to support the plan.
Once the machines are in place, dialling emergency with a suspected cardac arrest would result in a paramedic sending an ambulance and instructing the caller to begin CPR. The paramedic would provide a code to unlock the defibrillator box. The machine provides full instructions for its use.
Councillor Roughley is hoping to set up a meeting with paramedics, community groups and police in a couple of weeks. Groups who would like to be involved should email: email@example.com.
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