Matlock could now be one of the safest towns in Derbyshire as residents are now almost always 500 metres from a defibrillator after the installation of five new devices.
The Community First Responders (CFR) scheme in Matlock has installed five defibrillators across the town since October to make sure that residents and visitors to Matlock will have the best possible chance of survival if they suffer a cardiac arrest.
The devices are now situated at Raft restaurant and Fishpond pub, Cavendish Playing Fields, Long Meadow Residential Home, Barringtons restaurant in Darley Dale and Sherriff Lodge Hotel.
Gavin Cantrill, 33, EMAS dispatcher and CFR said they decided to install defibrillators in tribute to the founder of the Matlock CFR group, Terry Gregory, who died last year.
Gavin, who has lived in Matlock almost his whole life, said: “For every minute that passes without defibrillation a person’s chances of survival can decrease by up to 10 per cent.
“Particularly in rural areas, early defibrillation is absolutely vital while the patient waits for the ambulance to arrive. The sooner you attach a defibrillator to someone, the better their chances of survival.”
CFRs give up their spare time to attend appropriate emergency calls in their own community. Because they are based in the areas they support they are often able to arrive before the ambulance crew and provide early intervention to help a patient.
When someone calls 999 for a patient who is in cardiac arrest the call handler is able to direct the caller to the closest defibrillator and will instruct them on how to use it. All defibrillators also give audioable instructions to talk the user through how to use it.