All Saints Square gains lifesaving milestone

Published Wednesday, 23rd November 2016
5oth defibrillator in All Saints Square
Cllr Wyatt and Trish Lister with the 50th defibrillator

Rotherham Town Centre has helped a local charity reach an important milestone as it hosts a life-saving device.

Local charity Start a Heart 2:47 has been supporting the installation of CPADs  - Community Public Access Defibrillators - across Rotherham and the wider region for three years and the latest device in All Saints Square means they have hit a milestone of 50 devices installed.

Rotherham residents may have noticed green and yellow cabinets appearing on the walls of local buildings and wondered what they are. They contain the defibrillators -which are needed if someone suffers a cardiac arrest.

In Rotherham there are now CPADs right across the borough in places like the Lyric Theatre Dinnington, The Rockingham Arms at Wentworth and the Consort Suite in Thurcroft as well as town centre locations.

The devices are simple to use and can be used effectively and safely by people who have had no previous training. To access the device in an emergency call 999, ask for the ambulance service and, as well as arranging help, the call handler can guide you to the nearest CPAD and provide the access code.

Emma Scott, Community Defibrillation Officer for the Yorkshire Ambulance Service said: “We cannot emphasise enough the importance of accessing a defibrillator when someone stops breathing. Defibrillators are available in many public places such as leisure centres and train stations and now more and more are available in local communities available 24:7. The public should know that they are simple to use and that they cannot do any harm.”

Trish Lister, founder of Start a Heart 24:7, said: “All Saints Square, at the heart of our town, is the perfect location for our 50th installation.  We would like to thank all the people and organisations in Rotherham who have helped us achieve this milestone."

Councillor Ken Wyatt, Chair of Rotherham Heart Town added: “The Heart Town partnership has been leading on projects to rapidly and significantly increase the number of accessible lifesaving defibrillators in communities across the Borough. Start a Heart 24:7 has played a really important role in this work and the 50th installation is a real credit to their hard work.” 

When someone suffers sudden cardiac arrest their heart stops beating, they will become unconscious and stop breathing. Prompt action by anyone nearby offers their only chance of survival. An immediate 999 call for an ambulance and starting cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) immediately are essential but the only thing that can help to restart their heart is a shock from an Automated External Defibrillator (AED).

The earlier that shock is given, the better the person’s chance of survival. Each minute that ticks by following a cardiac arrest sees the patient’s chance of survival reduce by around 10% until a shock is delivered.

CPADs are usually kept in cabinets in prominent public locations with appropriate signs to help people to find them and know what they are. 

Locked cabinets need a numerical code to unlock the door. The ambulance service will give this code to the person who makes the initial 999 call, once they have confirmed that they are dealing with a cardiac arrest.

The most important thing to know is that if you are within the radius of a CPAD when you call 999 and that your call warrants the use of an AED, you will be informed of the cabinet location and given the code. 

You will be asked if there is someone with you who can get the device as if you are alone your priority will be performing CPR. Ambulance Control will talk you through the use of the device, which also talks to you and you cannot do any harm as the machine is fully automated and will only deliver a shock if one is needed. 

Visit the Start a Heart websiteimage