Save a Life Cymru has appointed six first-of-their-kind community coordinators to transform CPR and defibrillation access – including two based in south Wales who will work to support their local communities.
The responsibilities of the coordinators include working with communities, third sector organisations and charitable trusts to educate about Basic Life Support (BLS) awareness and training, and the four links of the cardiac arrest chain of survival; early recognition and call for help, early CPR, early defibrillation, and post resuscitation care.
The coordinators also provide hands on advice and support regarding Public Access Defibrillators (PADs), and work with communities to support the registration and maintenance of every defibrillator on The Circuit – which is crucial in helping to ensure that 999 call handlers can alert bystanders to nearby defibrillators in critical situations. If a defib isn’t registered on the Circuit, they will not be recognised by the ambulance service.
The urgency of early response cannot be overstated, as each passing minute without life-saving CPR and defibrillation decreases the patient’s likelihood of survival by 10%. The coordinators are dedicated to building confidence so people will act fast if they see a cardiac arrest by attempting CPR, receiving guidance from call-handlers, and accessing a defibrillator.
Each coordinator is responsible for a geographical area in Wales – to ensure support is available in even the most rural locations. All six have experience working within the healthcare profession – including 999 call-takers, resuscitation practitioners and experienced paramedics. They include:
- Sian Davis – team leader for south Wales
- Haden Tipples – central south Wales
- Chris Joyce – south east Wales
- Marc Gower – south west Wales
- Chris West – team leader for north Wales
- Tomos Hughes – north Wales
If a cardiac arrest happens, call 999. The call taker will tell you what to do, talk you through how to do CPR and direct you to the nearest registered defibrillator and they will also send an ambulance crew.
You can find out more about CPR and defibrillation training at https://executive.nhs.wales/SaLC
You can also learn CPR in 15 minutes for free through RevivR here: https://www.bhf.org.uk/revivr