Staff from Sacred Heart Primary School in Luton took part in defibrillator training on Monday.
The life saving equipment was donated to the school by Sarah Pyatt, a fundraiser for Sudden Arrhythmic Death Syndrome (SADS UK) in memory of her son, Jake Gallagher who passed away in 2013 aged 16.
The donation is part of SADS UK Big Shock Campaign to make defibrillators available in all schools, through her fundraising Sarah has already put defibrillators in a number of schools in Bedfordshire.
The defibrillator works to restore the heart rhythm if a person goes into cardiac arrest. In this emergency, the
earlier a defibrillator is used the better the chance is of survival.
The defibrillator donated to the school is easy to use by the layperson and provides voice prompts to the rescuer.
Sarah, from Houghton Regis, said: “I continue to raise money and awareness of SADS. I feel proud of the fact I have made ten schools heart safe.
“Seeing the memorial plaques above them is heartbreaking as it reminds me Jake is not here. But it also keeps Jake’s memory alive.
“I just love helping people and hope to make a difference. I would also like to thank every one for their continued support.”
The SADS UK Big Shock Campaign to legislate to make defibrillators available in all schools and widely in the community has the support of the ambulance services, the charity’s Patron Dr Hilary Jones, Good Morning Britain and Dame Helen Mirren who heads the charity’s defibrillator leaflet.
Anne Jolly, Founder of SADS UK, the Ashley Jolly SAD Trust, said: “SADS UK is grateful to Sarah Pyatt who has supported the charity significantly.
“SADS UK is pleased that Sacred Heart Primary School will benefit from having a defibrillator on the premises to restart the heart if there is a cardiac arrest on the premises.
“SADS UK works with schools and highlights the fact that as schools are a major hub in the community they should have defibrillators in place to save lives.
“Using CPR alone provides a 5% chance of survival but early use of the defibrillator as well increases the chance of survival to over 50%; this is why SADS UK and its members are so passionate about putting this lifesaving equipment in schools.”
After meeting with policymakers, SADS UK is pleased that the Department for Education is advising schools to consider the defibrillator as part of their first aid equipment.
This gives the Big Shock Campaign for legislating for defibrillators in all schools an enormous boost, defibrillators in schools will save young lives.
Copies of ‘The Warning Signs’ leaflets have been provided to the school to assist people who may have an underlying cardiac condition to be identified and treated.