Paramedic Sara is on a mission:
APARAMEDIC is pushing for a change in the law to make it compulsory for public places to have lifesaving defibrillators.
Sara Harris, 43, spoke to MPs at a special event in Parliament to promote the importance of defibrillators and CPR training. She joined colleagues from North West Ambulance Service (NWAS) in making calls for a change in the law to make it compulsory for all schools, businesses and other community buildings to have the lifesaving equipment and train children and staff how to use them.
The event was hosted by Andy Burnham, Labour MP for Leigh and Shadow Secretary of State for Health. Sara met Mr Burnham again this week to discuss the issue.
Sara, of Summerfields, Wilmslow, took a group of students from Wilmslow High School to be part of the event and show how children are able to learn CPR.
This is part of the work Sara has been doing in her role working in the community with NWAS.
Sara, mum to Thomas, six, and Ellie, 14, said: “When someone suffers a cardiac arrest, their chances of survival are based on luck that there is someone there who knows what to do.
“Children are great at learning how the use the equipment and if they learn the skills at school then they can take them home and are ready in case something happens.
“There is currently no legal requirement to have one in your workplace. However, having a defibrillator available can significantly increase a person’s chances of survival should they suffer a cardiac arrest. Every minute that passes without defibrillation reduces chances of survival by 10 per cent.
“There have been high profile cases of cardiac arrest such as Fabrice Muamba and Ted Robbins so people are more receptive to it. Now is the time to get the law changed.”
Sara, a paramedic for 13 years, has been on a onewoman mission to get a defibrillator in every school in Wilmslow. She has been visiting schools and teaching kids CPR.
Sara said: “I want to see every school in Wilmslow with a defibrillator and children trained in how to use them.
“We can do all this great work in the community but there will be no real change in survival rates until we have legislation to make it mandatory.”
An Automated External Defibrillator (AED) is used to deliver an electrical shock to a person’s heart in cardiac arrest, which is when the heart stops pumping blood around the body. This is not the same as a heart attack which is caused by a clot in an artery that supplies blood to the heart muscle. firstname.lastname@example.org @KarenBritton1