There are defibrillators installed outside 240 SPAR, EUROSPAR and ViVO branded stores in Northern Ireland, and now retailers here are being encouraged to take another step towards saving more lives from out of hospital cardiac arrests in our towns and villages.
The Circuit is the new National Defibrillator Network launched by the British Heart Foundation in partnership with the NHS, Microsoft and UK ambulance services to connect every device to its local ambulance service and the public, enabling even faster response times and more lives saved.
Now, SPAR, EUROSPAR and ViVO retailers here with devices installed at their stores, all of which are currently registered on the NI Ambulance Service (NIAS) network, are being urged to register them with NIAS on ‘The Circuit’ to continue the lifesaving work they have been doing for the past six years.
Henderson Group, which owns the brands in Northern Ireland, has also announced that 12 people who have had a cardiac arrest outside of hospital have been saved by their staff and devices at stores across the country.
Bronagh Luke, Head of Corporate Marketing at Henderson Group spearheaded the organisation’s Heart of the Community campaign with the ambition to install a device at every store in Northern Ireland, available 24/7.
Bronagh commented; “This is a really important stage for our continued campaign to provide more lifesaving equipment in our local towns and villages, especially our rural areas where ambulance times can be that bit longer. Our devices have always been registered with the local NIAS network and having a presence on The Circuit will mean even more lives can be saved.
“When cardiac arrest strikes, CPR and defibrillation are the only chances of survival for the victim. Staff at each of our retail stores with a defib are trained in CPR, and they work with their community to let them know that the device is there should they or anyone they know ever needs it.”
Stephanie Leckey, Community Resuscitation Lead at NI Ambulance Service added; “Henderson Group is setting a positive example to all retailers across Northern Ireland when it comes to installing devices for community use, communicating to their shoppers and training staff in CPR. It is essential when someone collapses with a cardiac arrest that CPR is started and then our Control staff can instruct a bystander where the closest defibrillator is located. Registering each shops’ defibrillator with the ambulance service on The Circuit will no doubt help to save lives”.
The Circuit network can be accessed via thecircuit.uk, where almost 2,000 AEDs are registered with the NI Ambulance Service, and soon to include those at SPAR, EUROSPAR and ViVO branded stores across Northern Ireland.
Having devices registered with The Circuit will help owners look after and maintain their defibrillators, ensure their device is emergency ready by receiving regular reminders to check it and they will be able to connect with other owners in the area.
Bronagh finished; “The Resuscitation Council UK has continued to update guidelines for CPR during the COVID-19 pandemic, however calling 999 and seeking ambulance assistance should always be done first and foremost should someone witness a person having a cardiac arrest.
“As the number of our stores grow, so too will the number of defibrillators available for our local communities, helping to save many more lives.”