Could you restart a heart?

Murray MacGregor – Monday 14th October 2019 – 3.50pm.

This week, literally tens of thousands of people, mainly children, will learn how to restart a heart.

Why is that important?  Because, learning CPR or cardiopulmonary resuscitation could turn you into a lifesaver.

When a someone suffers a cardiac arrest, not to be confused with a heart attack, they are clinically dead; their heart has stopped beating and they will not recover unless someone is prepared to start CPR quickly and a defibrillator is attached to them to reset the heart.

Restart a Heart Day, which takes place on Wednesday, was started by the Resuscitation Council and is supported by the British Heart Foundation.

This week, staff from West Midlands Ambulance Service will join volunteers across the region and the rest of the UK to train tens of thousands of children on how to do CPR. 

The volunteers come from all walks of life; community first responders, local businesses, students and lecturers from some of our universities and other NHS staff.  Together we will try to train as many people as possible in the life saving skill.

A cardiac arrest can happen to absolutely anyone; young or old, fit or not.  That’s why knowing and being prepared to carry out CPR is so important, because the next one could affect a friend or loved one of yours; you just never know.

Here’s an example of how knowing CPR can save a life:

On 11th of November 2017, John Simpson was at home in Sutton Coldfield using an exercise bike, when he started to feel unwell.  Initially he thought it was indigestion.

As the crews were treating John, his wife arrived home and was understandably shocked by what she found:

In a letter to the Trust, Mr Simpson said: “I would like to commend the actions of the two ambulance crews who attended the incident and undoubtedly saved my life. I would also like to commend to you the lady (known to me as Pam) who talked to me and kept me appraised of progress.

“There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that the actions of the crews allowed me to survive long enough to receive this life saving treatment.  Their concern, tolerance and professionalism was a constant source of reassurance to both myself and my wife.”

In January 2018, just two months after his cardaic arrest John met the staff who saved his life:

Paramedic Jas Nar, said “We don’t do this job for the thanks, but meeting someone like John really does make it all worthwhile.”



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