Northern Ireland Pursues Community Resuscitation Strategy

Northern Ireland joins a growing list of communities around the world to pursue a community resuscitation strategy.

An advocate of community resuscitation, Northern Ireland’s Health Minister Edwin Poots addressed the Assembly today urging the public to review the proposed draft strategy, which includes a proposal to improve the availability of, and access to, automatic external defibrillators (AEDs).

health_minister_and_andyIn his statement to the Northern Ireland Assembly, Health Minister Poots (shown with HeartSine Product Manager Andy McClernon and a HeartSine AED) said:”Experience from elsewhere has shown that community resuscitation can save lives. Cardiopulmonary resuscitation – or CPR – and early defibrillation are the two critical interventions that are required for a person to survive an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest. CPR is the act of providing the rescue breaths and chest compressions that can keep the person alive until professional help arrives.”

In his statement, Poots reminded the Assembly that “Northern Ireland has been a world leader in the field (of resuscitation). The late Professor Frank Pantridge, a constituent of Lagan Valley, and his colleagues at Queen’s University and the Royal Victoria Hospital not only invented the portable defibrillator but made an important contribution to the development of CPR. The late Professor John Anderson from the University of Ulster (and a founder of HeartSine) was an outstanding figure in biomedical research.  Part of their legacy is their vision and leadership.  So, the purpose of this strategy is to save lives, and we should be ambitious.”

The consultation on the Community Resuscitation Strategy for Northern Ireland is available at http://www.dhsspsni.gov.uk/current_consultations.htm.