Life­sav­ing ac­cess

In­ci­dents raise con­cerns over need for de­fib­ril­la­tors

Alpine Observer - - Front Page - BY JUSTIN JEN­VEY jjen­vey@ne­me­

A MED­I­CAL emer­gency last week at Bright Op Shop’s Shop 26 has prompted calls for a de­fib­ril­la­tor to be lo­cated some­where in Ire­land Street.

Last Mon­day an op shop vol­un­teer re­quired ur­gent as­sis­tance and was later flown to Mel­bourne with a blood clot in his carotid artery after fall­ing ill when in the store.

Other shop vol­un­teers iden­ti­fied the emer­gency and im­me­di­ately called Triple Zero but when asked by the op­er­a­tor where the near­est de­fib­ril­la­tor was they were left scram­bling for an­swers.

Bright Op Shop vol­un­teer Lois Matthews said no one could an­swer the ques­tion.

“No one here knew where the near­est de­fib­ril­la­tor was,” she said.

“Thank­fully it wasn’t re­quired and it only took the am­bu­lance a few min­utes to get here but that’s not al­ways go­ing to be the case.

“I know the Op Shop has bought de­fib­ril­la­tors for the hospi­tal and Hawthorn Vil­lage and I know there is one at Bendigo Bank but there’s noth­ing up this end of town to my knowl­edge.”

The de­fib­ril­la­tor at Bendigo Bank is ac­ces­si­ble dur­ing open- ing hours and can also be hired.

Closer to Ire­land Street are de­fib­ril­la­tors at the Bright RSL clu­b­rooms in Camp Street and with the town’s U3A group who run from be­hind the Bright Com­mu­nity Cen­tre.

Both are not ready avail­able though.

“The in­ci­dent the other day made us think we should be look­ing to put one some­where in Ire­land Street that can be ac­cessed 24 hours a day,” Ms Matthews said.

“Whether that’s out­side the front of the Alpine Ho­tel, I don’t know.”

“We’d gladly put one in here but it wouldn’t be any use once we close the doors at 4pm.”

The only 24-hour ac­ces­si­ble de­fib­ril­la­tor in Bright is out­side Alpine View Chil­dren’s Cen­tre.

Jonathon Hurst from the Bright Phar­macy where an el­derly woman had a heart at- tack two months ago agrees that a de­fib­ril­la­tor needs to be lo­cated in the main street and peo­ple need to know where.

“It’s just some­thing that is needed es­pe­cially with all the events that are held up this end of town dur­ing busy pe­ri­ods,” he said.

“I also think there needs to be some sort of list that can be passed around so that peo­ple know where each de­fib­ril­la­tor is.

“That type of sit­u­a­tion is stress­ful and time crit­i­cal enough that you don’t want to be look­ing for one.”

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