Local paramedics have thanked the Beaufort and Skipton Health Services and Beaufort Service Group following their generous donations which have funded three Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) for the Beaufort and Skipton communities.
Ambulance Victoria’s Beaufort Team Manager Clare Kingston, IGA Beaufort Manager Barbara Schiltz, Beaufort Service Group representative Dee Harding, Beaufort and Skipton Health Services CEO Trevor Adem.
AEDs are used to analyse a person’s heart rhythm and shock a person’s heart back into normal function, if they are in cardiac arrest.
The two new AEDs in Beaufort are located on the Western Highway, with one of them being in front of the IGA. Staff at the supermarket will be trained how to use the AED.
The other AED is also on the Western Highway, at the other end of the main street and opposite the park.
These AEDs are in addition to three AEDs that are already in the Beaufort community, including one at the golf course, another at the football club and a third at the men’s shed.
The third new AED is located at the Skipton roadhouse and is in addition to AEDs at the local football club and golf club.
Beaufort Team Manager Clare Kingston said that publicly available AEDs are easy-to-use devices and can save lives.
“The three new AEDs, the two in Beaufort and one in Skipton at the roadhouse, will make a big difference in the community, and for all of those people who pass through both towns – all three AEDs are in busy locations so will serve locals and visitors well in case of an emergency,” Ms Kingston said.
Trevor Weston, Ambulance Victoria Manager Emergency Co-Responder Programs, said that early Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) and defibrillation are key links in the ‘chain of survival’ – a process which can help save the lives of people in sudden cardiac arrest.
“The six steps in the ‘chain of survival’ are, early recognition of cardiac arrest, early access to emergency care (calling Triple Zero), early CPR, early defibrillation, early advanced care (paramedics) and definitive care (hospital),” Mr Weston said.
Mr Weston turning on an AED begins a step-by-step process with clear, easy to follow instructions.
“If the person’s heart is not in a rhythm that requires defibrillation, a shock will not be administered,” he said.
Ms Kingston said any CPR is better than no CPR.
“We would encourage the community to call Triple Zero for an ambulance, start CPR and use an AED if available. The Triple Zero call-taker will provide instructions on how to do CPR,” she said.
“I think the donation efforts of Beaufort and Skipton Health Services and Beaufort Service Group is truly amazing and it demonstrates the commitment in this community to care for others as well as the importance of better outcomes in critical situations like cardiac arrest.”
CEO of Beaufort and Skipton Health Services Trevor Adem said it is important that the AEDs are located within the community.
“With an ageing population in Beaufort and Skipton and the number of people that pass through this part of the state, for example truck drivers, it’s important that people in the area know where to access an AED, incase it is required,” Mr Adem said.