Life-saving training event held at St Albans council offices

PUBLISHED: 13:14 13 April 2017

Defibrillator training in the St Albans council chambers attended by MP Anne Main, mayor Frances Leonard and local councillors.

Defibrillator training in the St Albans council chambers attended by MP Anne Main, mayor Frances Leonard and local councillors.

Danny Loo Photography 2017

A training session in emergency first aid was held at St Albans civic centre to teach councillors how to use defibrillators.

Two defibrillators were fitted outside two local GP surgeries following a series of fundraising events; one outside Lodge Surgery in Normandy Road and one outside Highfield Surgery in Russet Drive.

Hertfordshire First Responders came to the training session in the council chambers on Friday, March 31, and showed 12 councillors how to use the defibrillators and perform CPR. St Albans Mayor Cllr Frances Leonard, was also in attendance.

Dr Tim Jollyman, who works at Lodge Surgery, gave the councillors an outline of why the defibrillators had been installed. By responding to sudden cardiac arrest with a defibrillator, the chance of survival can be as high as 70 per cent. For every minute the heart is not beating the chance of survival is lowered, and after 10 minutes without defibrillation very few people survive.

Janet Morris, a practice nurse at Lodge and Highfield Surgeries, said: “With the generosity and help from staff at our surgeries and the Four Nations restaurant, who kindly hosted a charity dinner for our cause, we were able to achieve this.

“We now have these defibrillators on the outside walls at each of our sites, and they are available for immediate use should the need arise.”

The defibrillators will work after a 999 call, during which the operator will ask the caller’s location and then supply the code to unlock the defibrillator box.

Janet said: “We want people to not be frightened to use them should the occasion arise. We now hope to promote awareness of these defibrillators and to start community training locally.

“We are proud that we now have the potential to save lives in St Albans.”

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I should probably have taken the hint! Walking out into the garden recently an unprecedented flock of thirty or more crows raucously greeted me from the treetops at the bottom of my garden. Cawing and croaking these big, black birds clung clumsily to the top most branches and twigs, jostling and flapping to stay balanced in a constant flurry of feathers. There is always something ominous about crows – they are after all carrion crows, the vultures of the bird world – always watching for scraps and weakness that might mean their next meal.

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