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Campaign pushes for a second heart starter machine in Ludlow
Buy this photo » From left: Aaron Drew, Coleen Smith (with defibrillator), Graeme Perks, Prescilla Toop and Penelope Bridstrup. 130854-2
A LUDLOW community centre is the likely home for the town’s second heart start machine.
The Rockspring Community Centre has been earmarked for a second defibrillator.
It will provide wider coverage for the town and supplement the one that has been operational outside the Ludlow Assembly Rooms since the beginning of the year, which was installed as part of a scheme backed by your Advertiser in a bid to save lives.
Now volunteers are looking for funding including possible sponsorship for the second machine that will cost £1,500 to buy and install.
More people willing to be trained how to use the machine are also needed and a training session run by West Midlands Ambulance has been pencilled in at Ludlow Castle on Sunday, March 3.
So far there are nine people trained and ready to use the defibrillator, but the more that can be put on the rota the better the chance of having someone close to hand when help is needed.
An automatic call system run by West Midlands Ambulance has gone live and this works through a list of people until an available responder is found.
“The more people we have trained the better because for the machine to make a difference someone needs to be with the patient as quickly as possible which means within about seven minutes at most,” said Graeme Perks who led the project.
People are trained free of charge and a session takes about four hours including learning basic resuscitation.
The heart start machines have a voice mechanism to guide users.
A defibrillator works by apply a controlled electric shock to help restart a heart that has stopped. It can buy vital time until medical professionals arrive.
The first defibrillator was provided by the Ambulance Service but subsequent machines will need to be purchased.
Ludlow Town Council has contributed £50 to pay for the automated telephone system.
The idea of having a defibrillator in the town came out of a successful pilot project to install them at key locations in the Clun Valley and train a team of volunteers.
The machines are useful in any location they are even more critical in a rural one.
The quicker the treatment begins the better the prognosis for people who suffer a heart attack or cardiac arrest.
It is hoped that in time more heart start machines will be installed at strategic locations around Ludlow , perhaps in the vicinity of Ludlford Bridge and the Food Centre at Bromfield .
The machines are kept in locked cabinets that can be accessed by volunteers with a security code.