A secondary school in Colchester has become the first in the area to install a potentially life-saving defibrillator.
Following a successful fundraising campaign, more than £1600 has been raised to have the device installed at The Stanway School in Colchester.
Available for emergency use twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, the defibrillator will be housed in a heated cabinet, located on the outside wall of the school.
Jonathan Bland, Headteacher at The Stanway School said: “The Stanway School has always aimed to be a hub of the local community and this step to be the first Colchester secondary school to provide a public access defibrillator demonstrates this perfectly.
“We are really pleased to be able to provide this service for the local area surrounding the school and to make further links with the local people of Stanway.”
Jeremy Hagon, ex-pupil and fundraising organiser, said: “The amazing generosity locally to help fundraise for this public access defibrillator in Stanway has been tremendous. As a former pupil, I’m proud to have led this campaign for the residents of Stanway, to help make Stanway a safer place for all.”
British Heart Foundation statistics show there are almost 30,000 out-of-hospital suspected cardiac arrest cases in the UK each year, but fewer than one in ten people survive.
Martin Ford, Colchester Community First Responder, said: “The installation of this defibrillator is in a prime location for residents of Stanway and thanks go to the Stanway School for agreeing to position this potentially lifesaving device on their premises. We ask everyone to #stopthink90 – where is your closest defibrillator.
“Our ongoing campaign across Colchester is to ensure you are never any more than 90 seconds from a defibrillator. For every minute that passes without defibrillation, a patient’s chance of survival decreases by 10 per cent.”
Installation of this defibrillator follows that of another device at the recently re-opened McDonald’s in Tollgate, with that device being supported by local businesses and Councillors in the area.
Maintenance of both defibrillators in Stanway will be undertaken by the Colchester Community First Responders and plans are being made for Heartstart courses to be held by the Community Responders at the school.
Disclaimer: Jeremy Hagon is an editor for Jumbo News.