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Lake Boga learns how to save a life

November 10, 2023 | in Community News

Lake Boga residents will gain the skills to save more lives, through the township’s Heart Safe Community program which is underway.

The Heart Safe Community program is a joint initiative between Ambulance Victoria (AV) and the Heart Foundation, and aims to improve survival rates for people suffering cardiac arrest by teaching locals how to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and use an Automated External Defibrillator (AED).

Kathy Noble learns CPR from Swan Hill’s Acting Paramedic Community Support Coordinator, Karla Allen, at Lake Boga’s first Call Push Shock session.
(Photo: Noel Fisher, The Guardian Swan Hill)

Swan Hill’s Acting Paramedic Community Support Coordinator, Karla Allen, said having the program in Lake Boga would help strengthen the region’s cardiac arrest response.

“The Heart Safe Community initiative helps community members feel confident to take action in someone’s time of need,” she said.

“The minutes between a cardiac arrest occurring and paramedics arriving are an important time for bystanders to act – for every minute that CPR is delayed, survival decreases by 10 per cent.

“Anyone can save a life in three simple steps: Call (Call Triple Zero 000), Push (Perform CPR) and Shock (use an AED).”

The first session teaching Call Push Shock to the Lake Boga community was held at the Lake Boga CFA on Wednesday 8 November.

Further sessions will take place through the month:

  • Tuesday 14 November, 4:30pm, at the Lake Boga Flying Boat Museum
  • Wednesday 15 November, 4pm, at the Lake Boga Bowling Club
  • Monday 20 November, 10:30am, at the Lake Boga Community Garden

Heart Foundation Victorian General Manager Chris Enright said the hope is that ultimately, every Victorian community can be ‘Heart Safe’.

“We know how effective our Heart Safe Community program can be and how important it is for the local community to drive it to embed change at a grassroots level,” she said.

The Heart Safe Community program also aims to increase the number of registered, 24/7 accessible AEDs and to increase the number of GoodSAM responders.

GoodSAM is a life-saving smartphone app that connects Victorians in cardiac arrest with members of the community who are willing to start hands-only CPR in the critical minutes before paramedics arrive.

The Heart Safe Communities launch comes off the back of AV’s Shocktober campaign, which aims to improve cardiac arrest survival rates statewide.

Through October, more than 500 people signed up as GoodSAM responders across the state and the number of responders registered in the Loddon Mallee region increased by 5% on the previous month.

There are currently 29 Heart Safe Communities across the state, with Lake Boga one of 12 new towns to commence the program.

Email us for more information or to participate in future Call Push Shock session.

Visit Heart Safe Communities for more information.