Six potentially life-saving defibrillators are being installed in the grounds of two of Staffordshire’s largest hospitals thanks to charity funding.
A grant from UHNM Charity is enabling University Hospitals of North Midlands (UHNM) to install the Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) at the Royal Stoke University Hospital and County Hospital in Stafford.
The first of four defibrillators at Royal Stoke went live on 12 March with another two set to be installed at County Hospital over the coming weeks.
The initiative was spearheaded by colleagues of Maintenance Technician Louis Fallows who suffered a cardiac arrest whilst at work in August 2019.
Louis, 30 from Werrington said: “I was having a normal day at work when the next thing I knew I was waking up four days later in Critical Care. I owe my life to colleagues in the Estates workshop who saved my life by performing CPR until an ambulance arrived. After having an internal defibrillator fitted my recovery went as well as it could have and I was back in work four months later.”
Louis’ life was saved by the actions and quick thinking of his colleagues in UHNM’s Estates Department.
Marc Porter, Estates Team Leader said: “Myself and three other colleagues, Simon White, Josh Hopwood and Thomas James were first on scene after Louis suffered his cardiac arrest and so began administering CPR. Working at Royal Stoke, we’re thankful that an ambulance was close by and was able to reach us quickly to help Louis. When the paramedics arrived, they asked us if we had any defibrillators and we said no.
“Afterwards, several teams including ours picked up on the need for defibrillators to be installed on site and we began working closely with UHNM and UHNM Charity to implement this. We hope they never have to be used but all feel really proud they’ve now been installed.”
The devices are fully accessible 24 hours a day to both staff, patients and members of the public and can be used with no prior training.
The chance of a person surviving a cardiac arrest falls by 10 per cent for every minute that passes without an AED being used.
Steve Rushton, UHNM Charity Manager said: “We were thrilled to work with Estates and Clinical Technology colleagues on this project. This is a fantastic use of charitable funds which benefit both staff and the local community. Every device has audible and visual instructions and is made accessible by following the instructions of a 999 telephone operator.”
“These six defibrillators will reassure our staff and people who visit our hospitals that anybody suffering from cardiac arrest has a substantially higher chance of survival.”
Mark Fararr, Regional Sales Manager at WEL Medical added: “‘WEL Medical is proud to have provided iPAD SP1 life-saving defibrillators and cabinets to the Royal Stoke and County Hospitals as part of the excellent initiative by the UHNM Charity, working on behalf of the University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust.’
If you would like to fundraise for UHNM Charity visit www.uhnmcharity.org.uk for more information, or call 01782 676444 to speak to one of the UHNM Charity team.
“These six defibrillators will reassure our staff and people who visit our hospitals that anybody suffering from cardiac arrest has a substantially higher chance of survival.” - Steve Rushton, UHNM Charity Manager
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