Photos by Finbarr O'Rourke
Ulster Bank has donated a potentially life-saving piece of equipment, a cardiac arrest defibrillator, to the local community in Newbridge in partnership with the town’s First Responders.
The device, which gives a high energy electric shock to the heart of someone who is in cardiac arrest until emergency services arrive, has been installed outside the Ulster Bank branch on Main Street and will remain accessible to the public at all times.
It is estimated that over 5,000 people die of sudden cardiac death in Ireland each year. According to the Irish Red Cross, a defibrillator used by a trained person increases the survival rate from Sudden Cardiac Arrest by 50% if CPR and defibrillation occurs within the first four minutes of the incident. Survival rates diminish at a rate of 7 – 10 per cent for every minute thereafter.
In addition to the installation of the defibrillator outside its Newbridge branch, Ulster Bank is also supporting this important addition to the community by covering the power and licensing costs. This initiative in Newbridge follows the rollout in 2017 of bank-wide CPR training for Ulster Bank colleagues, as part of a wider effort to make a difference in the communities that they live and work in.
Welcoming the announcement, Liam Mulpeter, Ulster Bank Newbridge Branch Manager said:
“Ulster Bank is delighted to support Newbridge Cardiac First Responders in the vital work that they do. Our branch’s location in the heart of the townbeside the River Liffey and close to St Conleth’s Church, the library and four schools, means that an area with high footfall now has a potentially life-saving defibrillator close by for anyone who may need it. It’s another great example of how Ulster Bank supports local communities.”
Commenting, Ger McNally from Newbridge First Responders said:
“We are grateful to Ulster Bank for providing people in Newbridge with an easily-accessible defibrillator. Patients have a much better chance of surviving a cardiac arrest if they are treated quickly so having a defibrillator close to hand can mean the difference between life and death. I can’t stress enough how important it is for people, young and old, to learn how to operate a defibrillator – and we can provide that training at any time, free of charge.”
Newbridge Cardiac First Responders is a community volunteer group which works with the National Ambulance Service to attend potentially life-threatening emergencies such as cardiac arrest, heart attack, stroke or choking. Because volunteers live and work in the local community, they may be able to arrive quicker and start lifesaving steps until the ambulance arrives.
The group has 12 volunteers currently, with eight more in training, and is urging more people to avail of its free training in how to use defibrillators.
For more information about Cardiac First Responders, visit www.cfr.ie.
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