13 January 2023
The St Helena Government’s Emergency Planning Department has recently received funding to launch a Community Automated External Defibrillator (AED) project. The funding has been provided by Disaster Management UK, the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO), Airlink and the Health & Social Care Portfolio.
The project will be rolled out over the coming months and will see an initial five AEDs purchased and located around the Island shortly. It is anticipated that further devices will be bought and distributed more widely around the Island in the future.
Placing these at key locations will provide members of the community with direct access to an AED in an emergency.
What is an AED and what are they used for?
Defibrillators are devices that send a safe electric shock to the heart to restore a normal heartbeat when someone is not conscious and not breathing (cardiac arrest).
A defibrillator may also be referred to as a DEFIB, an AED (Automated External Defibrillator) or a PAD (Public Access Defibrillator). Statistics show that if a defibrillator is used on a patient within the first few minutes of cardiac arrest, they have a 60-70% chance of making a full recovery.
The type of AEDs being deployed are designed so that they can be used by anyone, without specialist training. Once turned on they will instruct the user through voice commands on exactly how to use the device safely, for both the patient and the operator.
Where will they be located?
The first few AED’s have arrived and will shortly be placed in various locations around the Island. After assessing which areas the AED’s would be best placed it was decided to locate the first five within the following areas:
|Half Tree Hollow||Half Tree Hollow Clinic: Outside of main entrance|
|Francis Plain||The Pavilion Area: In the White Shed|
|Longwood||Police post: Outside of main entrance|
|Jamestown||Police HQ: Reception|
|Rupert’s||Sea Rescue Building: Outside the main entrance|
The AEDs in these locations will be clearly signposted and will be contained in a bright yellow box which looks similar to the below image.
The locations were chosen as these were considered to be areas where the devices were more likely be needed, and most effectively utilised. The first five are therefore being deployed in more densely populated areas and places with public services and leisure facilities that are used on a regular basis.
How to gain access
If you require access to an AED, the code to the cabinet can be requested from the Emergency Control Centre when dialling 999.
Further information on the AED project will follow in due course, including an update confirming when they have been installed at each of the locations.
#StHelena #Defibrillator #AED
13 January 2023