Wigston Magna Methodist Church Installs Community Defibrillator
Posted: Tue, 24 May 2016
The congregation at the church, in Cross Street, was assisted by local charity the Joe Humphries Memorial Trust (JHMT) in getting the defibrillator in place.
David Cawthorn, a senior member of the congregation at the church, said: "We know that defibrillators can save lives, so we wanted to get one – not only for the benefit of church members, but also for the wider community.
"The JHMT helped us to source funding for the defibrillator and make a successful bid to the Department of Health for some funding administered by the British Heart Foundation. We now have both a defibrillator and a cabinet to be placed on the wall of the church, so it will be accessible 24 hours a day to anyone in the local community."
The Joe Humphries Memorial Trust was set up in 2012 after the death of Rothley 14-year-old Joe Humphries from sudden arrhythmic death syndrome (SADS).
JHMT campaigns tirelessly for greater awareness and understanding of undiagnosed heart conditions, particularly in otherwise seemingly fit and healthy young people.
It also helps communities to get defibrillators in place, provides free CPR training for community sports clubs and groups, and runs a small grants scheme, the Inspire Awards, to help young people fulfil their potential.
David added: "This is tremendous. So often we hear of people suffering a cardiac arrest, either at home or whilst out in their local community. Speedy use of a defibrillator, along with cardio-pulmonary resuscitation (CPR), significantly increases their chances of survival. We are delighted that this defibrillator is now available, for both the church and the whole community.'
Charles Poole from the Joe Humphries Memorial Trust added: "When someone suffers a suspected cardiac arrest, call 999 immediately. Push hard and fast on the centre of the chest 30 times. Give two rescue breaths. Keep going until the emergency services arrive. If you'd rather not give rescue breaths, then you can deliver hands-only CPR. That's better than doing nothing.
"The ambulance service call handler, as well as despatching immediate assistance, has a map showing the location of public access defibrillators. They will advise the caller to get another person, if possible, to fetch the defibrillator.
"As soon as it arrives, switch it on and use it. Do not wait for the emergency services to arrive. A series of built-in voice prompts on the defibrillator itself will then give clear instructions. The defibrillator will only operate if the patient needs it, which means they can't be harmed.
"Although basically anyone can use the defibrillator without prior training, it's highly recommended that people familiarise themselves with an AED at the earliest opportunity so they are confident in using one at the scene of a cardiac arrest."
The defibrillator at Wigston Magna Methodist Church was commissioned by Rev David Vale during morning service on 8 May 2016, and is now in place and fully operational.