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The Gordonton community now has a heart defibrillator – and everyone is invited to a demonstration on how to use it next week.
The device – an Automated External Defibrillator G3 Automatic – can be used by anyone within a few minutes of training.
The idea to buy it came from Eastwest College staff member Keith Jellyman, who completed first aid training earlier this year.
Time is important
“The Red Cross are keen for communities to have their own defibrillator. Time is really important, every minute a person goes without defibrillation, the chance of survival drops dramatically. After 20 minutes, you’re as good as dead.
“That’s about how long it would take for an ambulance to get out here.”
On the strength of that he decided to raise money to get a device for Gordonton.
“We needed just under $4000, and through help from the Gordonton District Committee, and Trust Waikato, we managed to buy one just a few weeks ago.”
Easy to use
He says the device is “idiot” proof: “It’s really easy to use, the machine tells you what to do. The first thing it says when you open the lid is Don’t Panic. Then you follow the instructions. If it detects a pulse, it won’t deliver a shock.”
Ring the college – 24-hours
The device will be kept at the college, which is a 24-hour operation. “This means we can keep an eye on it; make sure the battery is up to date. Someone can ring us, and we can run it down to them, or they can come here.”
The devices are used in hospitals, by police and ambulance services, airlines, schools, cinemas and other public facilities.
Now the idea is for people to learn how to use it for themselves.
The Red Cross will give demonstrations on the use of the defibrillator at Gordonton School next Wednesday 9 November 2011, at 3.15pm and at the Eastwest College on Monday 14 November, at 4pm.