A CAMPAIGN has been launched in a bid to ensure residents have full 24-hour access to a defibrillator in Droitwich Town Centre so they are available when people most need them.
The drive is being spearheaded by Simon Clare who is a paramedic with West Midlands Ambulance Service and is also a Community First Responder in Droitwich – a role which involves being first on the scene when someone suffers a cardiac arrest or other life-threatening episode.
Mr Clare’s campaign is backed by West Midlands Ambulance Service and coincides with ‘Shoctober’, a scheme being held throughout October to highlight the importance of defibrillators and people knowing where they are.
Figures show of those who suffer an ‘out of hospital’ cardiac arrest, the survival rate is just seven per cent unless they can get the medical attention they need within three minutes. Some figures show survival rates can be as high as 74 per cent if a shock from a defib is received within three minutes of the heart being in ‘ventricular fibrillation’.
Modern defibrillators are so advanced that, if needed, there is a voice which talks people through how to use them and also analyses the patient’s heart rate, only allowing shocks to be delivered if one is needed.
Mr Clare decided to take action after noticing that, currently, although there are defibrillators in Droitwich – at the fire station, St Andrews Shopping Centre, Droitwich Leisure Centre and the golf club – they are all located in buildings and would only be accessible when those venues were open.
He wants to change all that so they are accessible all the time.
He told The Standard: “My question is why don’t we have the 24-hour access to this life-saving equipment and how can we get it?
“In comparison, I visited Broadway which has two – one at each end of the town in secure boxes and I even found one in Fladbury which is also in a secure box outside the village hall.”
Mr Clare added long-term he would like to get to the stage where the people of Droitwich were never more than three minutes away from a defibrillator.
And he has already had a good response to his campaign, including contact from Droitwich AED (Automatic External Defibrillator) and the Listers Group, as well as West Midlands Ambulance Service.
Anyone wanting to help with the campaign can contact The Standard at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 01527 588657 and we will pass the details onto Mr Clare.