NFU Mutual Smallholding Insurance

Author Topic: Community Defibrillator  (Read 380 times)

in the hills

  • Joined Feb 2012
Community Defibrillator
« on: January 28, 2020, 06:55:03 pm »
Due to our location ambulance response times aren't always good to our scattered and rather isolated hamlet and surrounding farms and holdings.
We know from experience that the emergency services often have trouble locating properties, too.
Due to a recent and very sad ending to a medical emergency the community is looking into the possibility of a community Defibrillator, comprehensive first aid kit and defib, CPR and general first aid training for as many people as possible within the community.
We are hoping that the defibrillator and first aid kit could be located in the porch (always open) of our little chapel.
We're just starting to explore options, funding and think about the practicalities.


Is there anyone that has done similar in their rural community?
We would love to hear from you ...... your story, funding available, training, practicalities.
Grateful for any advice, tips etc
Voss Electric Fence

harmony

  • Joined Feb 2012
Re: Community Defibrillator
« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2020, 07:32:07 pm »

We did this in our community. A local lady wrote to several funders locally to raise the money to buy a defib and kit bag. If you are a scattered community you might need more than one. I don't know what the current costs are.


You have to now apply to be a community first responder to your local ambulance authority and they will help you with the training.


The defib needs to be somewhere secure and dry. Our's is in the village hall in a locked cupboard. We had an electrician who set up a sensor so that when someone had collected the kit a light would flash outside the hall. This way no-one wasted time going in for the kit when it was en route.


I don't know about other areas but here in the North West Ambulance Service area we also carry oxygen.


One of our local pubs as a debib in their porch, which is secure but accessible if needed. It is nothing to do with our first responder team.


We are alerted by text but we used to have pagers.


When we first started (20 years ago'ish) we had 15 responders. Now we have two and I'm not sure we will carry on.


I think it is a very worthwhile thing in an isolated community. Obviously defib's can make a real difference when ambulances are over 8 minutes away. A defib stops a fibrillating heart and restarts it. It doesn't start a heart that has stopped but if someone can do effective CPR it will help until an ambulance arrives.


Often responders make a difference by supporting someone with breathing difficulties and their family whilst you wait for an ambulance. Also in rural areas where it can be harder to find an isolated properties someone in a yellow jacket at the roadside can be a real help to the attending crew.


Any questions ask away.

in the hills

  • Joined Feb 2012
Re: Community Defibrillator
« Reply #2 on: January 28, 2020, 07:45:15 pm »
Harmony, that's really helpful, thank you.


Sorry to be a bit thick but how do the pagers work? One potential problem is that we have no mobile signal up here.


Are the pagers alerted when a 999 call is made?


A simple idea for someone to stand on the roadside in a reflective jacket but a very good one. I will be sharing with the community, thank you.

harmony

  • Joined Feb 2012
Re: Community Defibrillator
« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2020, 09:16:49 pm »

When someone calls 999 the control team page or text the responder team in that area. You then decide if you can respond and you call in to say you are going. And you call in again to say you have left. We don't use them but our area has airwave pagers that you log on to say you can respond. Sometimes I haven't been able to go because I wasn't in the village or doing animals etc.


If the ambulance gets there first or maybe it isn't safe to attend they stand you down.


The ambulance service will help you with this. |We struggled here with signal too.

pgkevet

  • Joined Jul 2011
Re: Community Defibrillator
« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2020, 10:29:19 pm »
I thought modern defibs could be used by anyone..just need to ring for an unlock code and then the machine talks the user through how to do it?
One of the local villages has one located in an abandoned phone box. The nearest small town has on attached to the outside of the school... but frankly that's 450yds from the town centre so really needs a second one.

harmony

  • Joined Feb 2012
Re: Community Defibrillator
« Reply #5 on: January 28, 2020, 11:12:46 pm »
I thought modern defibs could be used by anyone..just need to ring for an unlock code and then the machine talks the user through how to do it?
One of the local villages has one located in an abandoned phone box. The nearest small town has on attached to the outside of the school... but frankly that's 450yds from the town centre so really needs a second one.



Yes, anyone can use a public defib. If someone calls 999 the operator can also advise where a public defib might be located and yes, all defibs do talk to you. The difference with a first responder is that they are trained in effective CPR and carry oxygen too. As I said a defib stops and starts a heart that is fibrillating, whilst a defib is checking the heart rhythm you do CPR, until it advises a shock. If the heart has stopped it wont shock.


Many public places have them now.



There are "Heartstart"" sessions run, often by responders to teach people how to give good CPR and use a defib, should one be available. First aid courses cover defib use now.

pgkevet

  • Joined Jul 2011
Re: Community Defibrillator
« Reply #6 on: January 29, 2020, 06:03:13 am »
Not to detract from the seriousness and usefulness of a community defib but a quick story:
Many years ago i was given a reconditioned defib from a local A&E that was upgrading. One of the TV stations heard about it and wanted to do a short fill-in piece about it. I had a superb Old English Sheepdog patient who had been through several difficult ops and finally sorted that was a real softy about being examined = so we borrowed him and owner for a fake demo.Every take we'ld have him lying down on a surgery table, playing dead, while I talked through the prep and charging. But every take he'd lift his head and grin at the camera just before the resusc. Ham actors can't keep a cue!

Steph Hen

  • Joined Jul 2013
  • Angus Scotland.
Re: Community Defibrillator
« Reply #7 on: January 29, 2020, 07:54:52 am »
I was told by a training crew they can be used by anyone as they speak to you and tell you what to do/check for. I also found it interesting that heart massage is often essential before use (not very ER/TV) because the heart gets chock full of blood from returning Venus system and a weak heart it would struggle to pump in that state. I had thought it was just to get some oxygenated blood round the body again but emptying is important. They also said funding is normally easy as these things are well used by men in their 50’s, 60’s and 70’s, so a few letters to Masonic lodges and golf clubs, rotary, results in easy funding compared to other community projects.

bj_cardiff

  • Joined Feb 2017
  • Carmarthenshire
Re: Community Defibrillator
« Reply #8 on: January 29, 2020, 09:11:56 am »
I have about three public ones within a mile of here. One is in a locked box attached to a community centre, one at a primany school and one is located at a road junction, in its own secure cabinet.

Womble

  • Joined Mar 2009
  • Stirlingshire, Central Scotland
Re: Community Defibrillator
« Reply #9 on: January 29, 2020, 09:40:35 am »
I thought modern defibs could be used by anyone..just need to ring for an unlock code and then the machine talks the user through how to do it?


Yes, that's right.


The problem for our community is that some of the places we'd like to put them have no mobile signal. If anybody has a solution for that, I'd be keen to hear it!
"All fungi are edible. Some fungi are only edible once." -Terry Pratchett

in the hills

  • Joined Feb 2012
Re: Community Defibrillator
« Reply #10 on: January 29, 2020, 10:24:32 am »
Thanks all.


Womble, I've started making a few enquiries this morning and have just chatted with someone from the British Heart Foundation. I've been told that you don't need a mobile signal for a community defibrillator. We haven't got one up here and they said you would just have an unlocked cabinet.

Womble

  • Joined Mar 2009
  • Stirlingshire, Central Scotland
Re: Community Defibrillator
« Reply #11 on: January 29, 2020, 10:46:02 am »
Thanks @in the hills

Can I ask you perhaps, if they send you more info, would you mind forwarding it on to me?
"All fungi are edible. Some fungi are only edible once." -Terry Pratchett

Maysie

  • Joined Jan 2018
  • Herefordshire/Shropshire Border
Re: Community Defibrillator
« Reply #12 on: January 29, 2020, 10:49:42 am »
I went on one of the St Johns Ambulance 3 day First Aid courses when we moved into the sticks.  I am not sure how much I would remember now, but it would still be more than I knew before I went on the course, and I would be more confident also. 

As has already been mentioned, the defib's are VERY easy to use and could easily make the difference between life and death, so I salute what you are doing 100%. 

A couple of other very basic things which I took away from my course: 

1. The emergency (999) call centres do far more than just arrange an ambulance to attend.  They also talk you through emergency basic 1st aid, primary checks, and how to do CPR if required, so you are not 'on your own' so to speak.  It sounds obvious, but that support at the other end of the telephone had never registered on my radar at all. 

2. Do not underestimate how hard it is to carry out 10-15 minutes of CPR on someone while the ambulance arrives.  It is absolutely exhausting.  Adrenaline may get you through, but if there is someone else nearby to take turns that is a massive help.  Get them to watch what you are doing so they can take over from you every minute of two.  Getting your technique right will help to save effort. 

smhowie

  • Joined May 2014
  • irvine, ayrshire, scotland

in the hills

  • Joined Feb 2012
Re: Community Defibrillator
« Reply #14 on: January 29, 2020, 11:14:26 am »
Hi Maysie, my sister lives 'in the sticks' in Shropshire and they recently had CPR training.
She said exactly the same to the trainer..... She didn't know whether she would have the strength to keep going for the required time. She was told that you should aim where possible to work in a team. Two people to do the CPR. One person to be on the phone to 999/dealing with other stuff.
I'm guessing this would be easier said than done but the ideal.


Yes Womble, I'll let you know what I find out. Check out the website for The British Heart Foundation in the meantime. It's quite good.
Even some healthy eating recipes on there!

 

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