Importance of workplace defibrillators to save lives

The lack of knowledge about Australia’s reading killer highlighted by St John Ambulance NSW.
The lack of knowledge about Australia’s reading killer highlighted by St John Ambulance NSW.

Nearly 30% of Australians sudden cardiac arrest is. It’s the comprehensive term for a heart attack, and is our nation’s leading cause of death.

Ensuring your workplace is safe and colleagues are suitably trained in case of emergency was the focus of World Day For Workplace Safety and Health yesterday.

Around 25,000 Australians experience a Sudden Cardiac Arrest out of hospital every year, with a current survival rate of 5%. If a defibrillator is used within the first 2-3 minutes, the chance of survival increases to 70%.

St John Ambulance NSW advocates for defibrillators to be considered a necessity in any workplace so that in the event of an emergency, staff can act quickly and with confidence.

General Manager of Training at St John Ambulance NSW, Martin Thomas said it’s an important time to raise awareness about the presence of a defibrillator and first-aid training.

He’s concerned that paper and pens are rated more important on the list of office essentials than a defibrillator.

A recent St John Ambulance Australia survey uncovered other statistics:

  • Only 8% of Australians deemed a defibrillator the most important item to have in the workplace.
  • 78% of Australians don’t think people under 45 years old can experience a Sudden Cardiac Arrest.
  • Recent research 61% of Australians claim their office either doesn’t have a defibrillator or they don’t know where it’s kept
  • 58% of Australians say they wouldn’t feel confident using a defibrillator, with reasons being that they haven’t had training in first aid (54%), they find it too complicated to use (24%) and they worry they might hurt the person (22%).

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