BOSSES at a South Derbyshire school have thrown their weight behind the Mail’s effort to install defibrillators in gyms and fitness centres across the area.
The Pingle School, in Coronation Street, Swadlincote, have backed the Stay Fit, Stay Alive campaign by saying that having one of the lifesaving machines in place was ‘vital’ to customers or staff.
The school has two devices installed and 25 staff members are trained on how to use it in an emergency.
Stella Hughes, first aid pupil welfare officer at the school, spoke to the Mail about the importance of having the devices in place and ready to use.
She told the Mail: “I think the machine is the most important thing for any organisation to have.
“They should be in all school, shopping centres, gyms, factories and offices, in fact everywhere that groups of people are.
“Put simply, they could save someone’s life. Cardiac arrest could happen to anyone at any time.
“We hope we never have to use one but we have two defibrillators in school.
“One in situated in the medical room but the other one is in the sports hall for use by the community groups that use our facilities.
Mrs Hughes also moved to dispel fears that the machines are hard to use, saying that anyone can be trained up to use them.
She added: “The machines are easy to use and no one should ever be frightened to use the defibrillator.
“It even talks you through the process.
“We have 25 staff that are fully trained in the use of the defibrillator but anyone can use it if they need to.”
The Mail launched its campaign after a 64-year-old man was left brain damaged and fighting for life after suffering a cardiac arrest while working out at a local gym.
It has since been backed by people from across the area including Burton’s MP Andrew Griffiths, and several gyms.
A defibrillator delivers an electrical current through the chest which aims to shock the heart back into a normal rhythm allowing it to pump again.
A portable defibrillator is especially designed for people with no medical background.