In our reception we have a potentially life-saving, fully automatic defibrillator – it’s there for our patients and staff obviously but is also available to the wider community.
If someone has collapsed and isn’t breathing, an AED (Automatic External Defibrillator) will check the person’s heart rhythm and will send a shock to the heart, if appropriate, to try and restore a normal rhythm. AEDs are used to treat sudden cardiac arrest – when the heart suddenly and unexpectedly stops beating. Outside a hospital setting, on average, less than 10% of victims survive a cardiac arrest. With defibrillation, survival rates can go up to about 40% and if suitable patients are shocked within 2 minutes the survival rate can be as good as 70%.
An AED won’t deliver a shock if it’s not appropriate, so you won’t cause harm through inappropriate use. The unit is fully automatic – you open the lid and it talks (loudly and clearly) to tell you exactly what to do…..Remember – a person who is unconscious and not breathing is already dead to all intents and purposes, so there is nothing you can do that is going to make their situation worse but without help there is no way they are going to survive – so please try something!!
Click here to see a video which shows you how to use an AED
BEFORE ANYTHING ELSE, IF SOMEONE HAS COLLAPSED AND ISN’T BREATHING – CALL 999
There are loads of AED’s dotted around Stamford – keep your eyes peeled and make sure you know where the nearest defib is to the places of significance in your life – home, work, family etc! The East Midlands Ambulance Service will help you to locate the nearest defibrillator when you call 999, but it’s better if someone is already en route to fetch a nearby defibrillator whilst the 999 call is being made!
Public Access defibrillators are housed in boxes on the external walls of buildings and are accessible 24/7. You will need a security code to obtain access to the defibrillator and this will be given to you by the 999 operator.
PLEASE NOTE: We used to maintain a list of defibrillators here on our website. However, the numbers of defibrillators around has grown hugely (which is great) and it had become impossible to ensure the list remained comprehensive and up to date. Also, it is essential that checks and maintenance issues are addressed on a regular basis, to maintain defibrillators in good working order and we have decided that we cannot take risk of a member of the public relying on our list for the location of a defibrillator and then discovering that when they need a it in an emergency it either isn’t there or hasn’t been properly maintained and therefore doesn’t work.