It is estimated that around 30 000 Australians have the terrifying experience of a Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) each year with only a 9-10% survival rate*. However, quick access to a Defibrillator and a trained operator can increase those odds by as much as 80%. One local sporting club wants to ensure that their members have access to and training for the life-saving machine.
It comes as 20 members of the Caloundra Mallet Sports Club today took part in a special training program to learn to use the Club’s new Automated External Defibrillator (AED) that State Member for Caloundra Mark McArdle sponsored last month.
“Today’s defibrillators are small, easy to use and they can help keep someone alive while the paramedics are on their way.” Mr McArdle said.
“Every minute between when a person experiencing a cardiac arrest and when they can get access to a defib is critical. Having this machine at the club and with the added training I know that we will have a confident group who will be qualified to help if circumstances arise.” Mr McArdle said.
President of the Caloundra Mallet Club Sue Bertram said that the Defibrillator would offer important peace of mind to everyone who uses the croquet courts and the clubhouse.
“We take every precaution to ensure our members are as safe as possible while playing but with the heat conditions that we experience here in Queensland it is comforting to know that we now have the extra security of the Defib.” Mrs Bertram said.
“A defibrillator has the ability restore the normal rhythm of the heart by sending an electrical signal to the heart but time is of the essence.” Mr McArdle said.
“Much like an insurance policy, the members can take comfort in having the Defib available, and with a bit of luck it will never need to be used.” Mr McArdle said.
Approximately 577 people experience a cardiac arrest each week in Australia and of those four cases are of people under 35 years of age. It is estimated that half (54%) of emergency calls for SCA are for people aged over 65, with a further third (33%) being for those aged 35-64 years.
*A cardiac arrest is distinct from a heart attack as a heart attack occurs when a blocked artery restricts blood flow to the heart muscle. This can lead to a sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) in which a glitch in the heart’s electrical system occur and the heart’s normal pumping is interrupted.