What is “Defib Feb”?
Written by Sam Mackay KeepaBeat Founder
A couple of years ago I started a campaign on my local Facebook page called Defib Feb. The aim of the campaign was to drive awareness locally of all the surrounding defibrillators and their locations. If more people knew where they were and how they work then more people would be likely to use one if they needed to.
As we enter into the new campaign of 2020 not only do I want local people to find and share pictures of their local AED’s (automated external defibrillators) but I also want to share how to use them and how safe they are!
Here are some facts
· There are around 30,000 out of hospital cardiac arrests every year
· Without immediate treatment 90-95% of all sudden cardiac arrest victims will die
· Only 22% of people in the UK would be confident in starting CPR on a stranger (even less would use a AED)
· For every minute you delay using a defibrillator the chance of survival drops at a rate of 10-14% per minute
Can we make a difference?
Yes – We can! Knowing CPR and using an AED really can make a difference. It’s all about giving the casualty the best possible chance of surviving an out of hospital cardiac arrest.
Do you have to be trained to use an AED?
No – Anyone can use a defibrillator, but training will help to make you feel more confident.
Can you hurt someone by using a defibrillator?
No – AED’s are designed to only shock a person that needs it. It will not shock a person that doesn’t need to be shocked.
Are they hard to use?
The unit will automatically start to give instructions as soon as you turn it on (or triggered by opening the case). There are clear visual instructions either on the unit, the pads or both. Audio instructions can also be heard throughout the use of the defibrillator.
How do I do CPR – The best way to learn CPR is to do a course on basic lifesaving skills. But if an AED is present it will also instruct you in how to do CPR. Essentially you need to place the heel of your hand in the centre of the casualty’s chest and press hard and fast. If you do not know how to give rescue breathes you may find it easier to do compression only CPR. Should you wish to do the breaths we work at a ratio of 30:2. That’s 30 compressions to 2 breaths. Do not stop! Keep CPR going until paramedics tell you to stop, you become too exhausted to carry on or your casualty regains consciousness.
We will be doing lots of posts and videos this month so make sure to follow both our KeepaBeat UK page and your local pages too!
Get looking fir those AED’s and send us your pictures!