Increase in Northern Ireland’s AED Awareness

According to BBC Newsline, there has been an increase in Northern Ireland in regards to the awareness of sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) and the importance of automated external defibrillators (AEDs):

  • Students throughout Northern Ireland are becoming more familiar with AEDs, as they receive training on the lifesaving devices in conjunction with important cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) training.
  • The ambulance service in Northern Ireland is undergoing a strategic mapping exercise that will identify the location of preexisting AEDs, as well as the locations where they are needed. This is a crucial step, as in the event of SCA, time is critical. An American Heart Association study showed that for every minute defibrillation is delayed, the victim’s chance of survival decreases by seven to ten percent. After 10 minutes, typical SCA survival rates drop to zero.
  • The Northern Ireland Assembly voted unanimously for the Executive to research the cost of implementing a plan that will call for an AED to be available alongside every fire extinguisher in every single public building in Northern Ireland.

Sudden cardiac arrest strikes almost six million people a year around the world. With 84% of SCA events taking place outside of a healthcare setting and a survival rate of five percent or less, it is important that we equip all public places with automated external defibrillators.

Watch BBC Newline’s news feature below to learn more.

Should defibrillators be installed in every public building in Northern Ireland? It’s a question that was discussed at today’s Assembly. Our health correspondent Marie Louise Connolly, visited a Lisburn primary school, where she met some pupils who are already ahead of the game.

Posted by BBC Newsline on Tuesday, May 19, 2015