On Wednesday 16 October 2019 volunteers from the West Midlands CARE Team and Warwick Medical School joined forces with other teams across the UK to take part in Restart a Heart Day.
The Restart a Heart campaign (RSAH) is an annual initiative across the UK led by the Resuscitation Council (UK) in partnership with The British Heart Foundation, British Red Cross, St John Ambulance, and Yorkshire Ambulance Service which aims to improve the low numbers of people surviving out-of-hospital cardiac arrests. Across the UK, there are over 30,000 cardiac arrests outside of hospital every year, but the survival rate is less than 1 in 10. If more people knew how to do CPR, more lives could be saved. In Norway, where CPR is more widely taught, the survival rate is four times that of the UK.
Bystander CPR increases survival by two to three times, however, today it is delivered in only one in five cases. The aim of the Restart a Heart campaign is to teach as many people as possible the life saving skill of Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) through the provision of FREE training events in schools and public places.
As part of an initiative to improve rates of survival from cardiac arrest the West Midlands CARE Team worked with the West Midlands Ambulance Service to determine which areas of Birmingham had the lowest bystander CPR rates over the period 2017-18. The B5 Aston area scored lowest with no cases receiving bystander CPR. The team therefore made a plan to target this area and were very grateful to Aston University for letting them run thew training event on their campus site.
Throughout the day our volunteers trained over 200 students and staff from the university in lifesaving CPR.
We were also able to promote the lifesaving GoodSam Alerter App which notifies enrolled emergency services personnel close to a cardiac arrest and allow them to provide assistance.
An amazing effort from all involved.