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ESR advice note on Defibrillators, May 2013

Posted: 08.05.13

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Safer Playing Environments – The provision of Defibrillators

England Squash & Racketball advocates the availability of Automated External Defibrillators (known as AED’s or Defibrillators) within all Clubs and facilities.

Jon Carney, ESR’s Facilities Manager explains; “evidence and research clearly identifies that AED’s can make a difference between life or death in the event of a cardiac arrest."

Clubs and providers should take heed of impressive results that have been reported with survival rates as high as 74% with fast response times often possible when an AED is nearby in a complementary location”.

There is currently no legislation in the UK which obliges certain businesses or premises to provide an AED but under English law, there can be liability in negligence for failing to take appropriate safety precautions on your premises.

AED’s are commonplace in most public leisure facilities and educational leisure establishments however it is the community sports club sector where their availability is less certain. A recent snapshot survey of this sector by ESR suggests that 30% of community sports clubs do not currently provide AED’s. Key barriers as to why AED’s were not provided included cost, no funding available, lack of knowledge on the benefits, fear over the liability of misuse or maintenance and that clubs have looked into it but it wasn’t the current priority for them.

ESR would urge all Clubs to invest in an AED as soon as possible; there is currently no public funding available to acquire them however, they must be seen as a ‘need to have’ item considering their potential impact when required.

ESR has secured an alliance with St. Johns Ambulance for advice on AED’s and First Aid; this also extends to discounted rates for its members on first aid equipment and training.

St. Johns AED’s and other first aid equipment can be found at St John Ambulance

To receive an ESR discount of up to 15% (dependent on model), contact 0207 239 8140 or and quote ESR AED. For each AED sold, St. Johns will also give 1 free training place.

*Cardiac arrest is totally different from a heart attack. A cardiac arrest happens when your heart stops pumping blood around your body. As a result you will be unconscious and won’t be breathing normally. Immediate cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and defibrillation is needed to have any chance of survival. The average age of a cardiac arrest in the UK is between 35-44 yrs old.