Rory was invited to tour around the villages of Greystoke, Penruddock and Newbiggin to see firsthand the way in which the Eden Lifeline Project is helping to save lives in rural communities through the installation of community Public Access Defibrillators (cPADs). There are now 11 cPADs installed outside village halls across Eden, and the Eden Lifeline Project aims to see every village in the area have access to their own cPAD cabinet.

Rory met with representatives of the Eden Lifeline Project, the North West Ambulance Service, and GreenUrban – who have built the cPAD cabinet – to understand the nature of the problem, and the way in which the devices will help save lives. For those who go into cardiac arrest, there is a 95% chance of the heart restarting if a defibrillator is used within the first 90 seconds. This recovery rate drops alarmingly to as low as 12% however, if a defibrillator is used after 8 minutes of going into cardiac arrest – the length of time ambulance services aim to respond to emergency calls. By installing highly visible community defibrillators in public areas, which anyone can access with a code provided by 999 operators, the project aims to give those in cardiac arrest the best possible chance of recovery by providing the local community with quick access to this life-saving technology.

Rory said: “With the best will in the world, it is simply not always possible to get an ambulance to those living in our most remote communities within eight minutes, let alone 90 seconds. These cPADS are therefore an incredibly valuable community resource, that mean residents in rural parishes need not find their chances of survival diminished simply because of the community in which they live. There are over 60 community first responder teams in Cumbria, comprising nearly 800 volunteers, and all of them are doing fantastic work to provide emergency first response care to those in need. The Eden Lifeline Project provides yet further support by allowing everyone in the community, from 9 year olds to 90 year olds, the means to save a life with this clever piece of technology. I am keen now to see cPADs in every village and community in Cumbria, and I will offer Philippa Groves and her team at the Eden Lifeline Project, all the help they need to see us succeed in this aim.”

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