Defibrillator training was "shocking" success!

South West Ambulance Service training session for West Hill residents

Nearly 20 residents and Councillors attended the free training session on 11th May provided by South West Ambulance Service following the recent addition of the two new public access defibrillators funded by the Parish Council.

The training was hosted at the RBL West Hill clubhouse, where one of the new defibrillators is sited (the other is at 11 Eastfield).

We learned about the "chain of survival" steps and the importance of starting CPR (chest compressions) as soon as possible, even if help is on the way. The most important first step is to call 999 and ask for an ambulance. The controller will tell you if there is a public defibrillator nearby.

We were shown how to do CPR and had a chance to try it on the special training dummy. A lot of people were surprised at how much force is needed to do it properly. Here is District/County Councillor Jess Bailey trying it out.

Councillor Jess Bailey attempting CPR on the training dummy during training

We were shown how a public access defibrillator actually works and were relieved to discover that it tells you what to do. You just have to listen and follow the instructions, as well as use some basic common sense. The machine helps to monitor the patient's heartbeat and will instruct the responder whether to push a button to deliver another "shock" or do more chest compressions or something else.

The Parish Council is grateful to South West Ambulance Service for delivering the training and to RBL West Hill Club for hosting the session at the clubhouse. And, of course, to the residents who joined us on the day and asked lots of questions.

We are still looking for a site for another defibrillator. It needs to have an electricity supply and be accessible by the public. If you can help, please contact our Clerk Anne Oliver.

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