Audlem's High Street Medics

Monday, 11 January, 2010

Staff at Audem's Co-operative Coop store have been given specialist life support training to boost the survival chances of shoppers who suffer a cardiac arrest.

North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust (NWAS) provided free training to four members of staff - the manager and three customer service assistants. The training took four hours to complete and included operating a defibrillator - a machine that can restart the heart by giving an electric shock in some cases of cardiac arrest and cardio pulmonary resuscitation (CPR).

The new skills they have acquired, with the support of NWAS, mean that the Co-operative staff now have the ability to provide life-saving help to patients before paramedics arrive.

NWAS's Community Resuscitation Development Officer, Rob Sharples, who delivered the training said: "Giving free training to local volunteers means they have the ability to provide life-saving help in the first few critical minutes after a cardiac arrest, now staff at the coop can offer this additional and reassuring service to their customers.

"Survival chances fall by 10 per cent every single minute someone is in cardiac arrest. Having defibrillators in communities and town centres helps save lives. Research shows that applying a controlled shock within five minutes of collapse provides the best possible outcome for the patient."

Store manager, Jackie Gibbons said: "As a retailer committed to the local community, we are only too happy to support the North West Ambulance Service and its initiative, which could, ultimately, save lives."

NWAS is responsible for 200 public access defibrillator sites across the region.

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