With a heart attack every second counts, for every minute a person is in cardiac arrest their chance of survival is reduced by ten percent.
Determined to save lives the City of Greater Geraldton has installed an automatic external defibrillator (AED) machine at the Queen Elizabeth Centre (QEII).
An automatic external defibrillator is a life-saving machine that gives the heart an electric shock to restart during a sudden cardiac arrest, a condition that occurs when the heart unexpectedly stops.
City of Greater Geraldton Mayor, Ian Carpenter, said the placement of the AED machine was in support of St John Ambulance WA Community First Responder program.
“According to St John Ambulance WA around 30,000 Australians suffer sudden cardiac arrest every year and fewer than five percent survive, often because help does not arrive in time,” Mayor Carpenter explained.
“Early intervention is crucial in saving the lives of patients suffering a sudden cardiac arrest, which is why we decided to place an AED machine at the QEII.
“These machines are not meant replace the need for an ambulance but when someone suffers a heart attack every second counts.”
According to the Mayor staff will be trained to use the automatic external defibrillator; however the beauty of the machine is that anyone can use it.
“People just have to follow the instructions given by the machine, they are safe to use because the AED automatically assesses the person’s heart and will not shock a normal heart beat,” he explained.
St John Ambulance WA’s Community First Responder program is a community based initiative designed to create a direct link between St John Ambulance WA, the triple zero (000) call centre, local communities and organisations.
For more information on the Community First Responder program visit www.stjohnambulance.com.au/st-john/ambulance-and-health-services/first-responder