This Valentine's Day, Better and LAS joined forces to show some heart.
The country’s busiest ambulance service launched a new campaign - 'Teach The Beat: Restart a Heart' - to teach more Londoners lifesaving skills, and how to teach these skills to their colleagues, friends and families.
People across the capital in businesses and community organisations are learning how to do chest compressions and becoming familiar with a defibrillator – but also how to pass these skills on so as many people as possible have learnt how to save a life.
Chris Hartley-Sharpe, Head of First Responders at London Ambulance Service said:
“We want everyone to be confident that they could perform basic lifesaving skills on someone in cardiac arrest.
“Taking simple actions – performing chest compressions and using a defibrillator if one is available in the vital first few moments could save a life.
“Our Teach the Beat campaign will see people be taught these skills, and how to teach them to others in their place of work or community group – so as many people as possible have the confidence to aid someone in cardiac arrest.”
Better's National Standards & Compliance Manager Michelle Howe said:
“Better are extremely pleased to support the London Ambulance Service’s Teach The Beat campaign.
“As the UK’s largest leisure trust we’ve made a commitment to workplace CPR training for as many staff as possible.
“Learning these very simple lifesaving skills gives employees the confidence to assist someone in cardiac arrest at work or in their community and gives the person in cardiac arrest the best possible chance of survival.
“We challenge employers to follow our lead and sign up to Teach The Beat today. The difference you make could save a life.”
Cardiac arrest is when the heart stops pumping blood round the body. Every second counts as people in cardiac arrest are clinically dead. It is vital they receive immediate life-saving attention.
London Ambulance Service typically reaches patients in cardiac arrest in seven minutes but early intervention will give the person the best chance of life. Two thirds of people in cardiac arrest in London were given CPR by a passer-by or a relative last year.
Chest compressions will help to keep blood pumping around the body. Just as a heart beats, chest compressions are best learnt by following a beat, such as to the Bee Gees’ hit Stayin’ Alive.
The Service estimates that one person trained to be a trainer could then ‘Teach the Beat’ to 100 people each year. Through this, we could see 5000 people learn lifesaving skills thanks to Teach the Beat volunteer trainers in the first year, with 10,000 in the following year.
Better staff performed CPR on 16 casualties last year, with all 16 surviving to hospital, and so far at least 10 recovering well enough to leave hospital.