Pics by Aberdeen College photography student Findlay MacDonald
Rugby players from Robert Gordon University (RGU) in Aberdeen recently tackled a very different type of training when they visited their local Scottish Fire and Rescue Service station in Aberdeen to learn life-saving CPR skills.
The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) and British Heart Foundation (BHF) recently teamed up to give communities across Scotland the opportunity to learn life-saving skills.
All 356 of SFRS’s fire stations took delivery of a BHF-donated Call Push Rescue training kit and each station acts as a base for local people to learn vital cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) skills and potentially save someone’s life if they go into cardiac arrest.
RGU team captain Sean Megahy had read about the fire service’s call for people to come forward and learn CPR and when he asked the team if they would be interested they jumped at the chance to learn how they could become life-savers.
He said: “It was very interesting to hear about the range of work the fire service is involved in when I heard about the CPR partnership with the British Heart Foundation I thought we could do something positive as a team and learn some potentially life-saving skills.
“The team really enjoyed learning something new and now they are equipped to help someone out if they are having a cardiac arrest until the ambulance service arrives.
“We would encourage everyone to consider contacting their local fire station to arrange a suitable time to go along and teach themselves CPR. We would encourage everyone to help SFRS and BHF build a nation of life-savers.”
It takes just 30 minutes to learn CPR using the Call Push Rescue kit and it’s taught by DVD so there’s no need to organise a trainer. Community groups will be able to contact their local fire station, both full-time and retained, to arrange a time to go to a station, watch the DVD and practice with the kit.
Members of the public can contact their local station or fire officer and arrange a mutually agreeable time to visit their local station.
According to the Scottish Government, around 3,500 people in Scotland have an attempted resuscitation each year because they have suffered a cardiac arrest outside of hospital, but only 175 people (5%) survive (1).
When someone goes into cardiac arrest their heart is not pumping properly and every second counts. But performing immediate CPR, as part of the chain of survival, can keep oxygen circulating around the body until the arrival of medical professionals or a defibrillator.
SFRS Area Manager for Aberdeen, Duncan Smith said: “Scottish Fire and Rescue Service is proud to be working in partnership with the British Heart Foundation in a bid to help train as many people as possible in the use of CPR across the city.
“This partnership is one part of the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service’s commitment to support the Scottish Government’s Out of Hospital Cardiac Arrest Strategy and Save a Life for Scotland campaign. We want to contribute to saving an extra 1000 lives in Scotland by 2020.
“We have CPR kits at all of our Aberdeen stations. Members of the public, or groups such as the rugby team, are encouraged to contact their local fire officer or fire station and arrange a visit and some training. The training will empower people and give them the skills they need to deliver life-saving assistance to anyone suffering from cardiac arrest.
“We are extremely grateful to the British Heart Foundation for providing the CPR kits and we hope this initiative will save hundreds of lives in the weeks, months and years to come.”
Call Push Rescue is part of the BHF’s ambition to create a Nation of Lifesavers across the UK, where everyone will have the skills to help save a life when someone goes into cardiac arrest.
The BHF Scotland and SFRS partnership supports the Scottish Government’s Out of Hospital Cardiac Arrest Strategy, which BHF Scotland is also advising on. The strategy aims to increase survival rates so that an extra 1000 lives are saved by 2020.
To join the Nation of Lifesavers and get the BHF’s Call Push Rescue Kit visit www.bhf.org.uk/cpr