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Swansea on track to install 300 life-saving defibs

Swansea is on track to have 300 new life-saving defibrillators in place in communities across the city by the end of the year.

The latest round of installations has seen 40 defibrillators located in Swansea’s Pay & Display Car Parks thanks to funding from the council.

Swansea Council has teamed-up with the charity Heartbeat Trust UK to install 300 easily accessible defibrillators covering all its wards as it aims to become the UK’s first ‘Defib-friendly’ city.

As well as this training on how to use them is taking place across Swansea thanks to the British Heart Foundation Cymru and St John Ambulance Cymru.

Swansea Council’s Deputy Leader Andrea Lewis, who has led the project for the council, said: “Today (Monday Oct 16) is world Restart A Heart Day so it is a great opportunity to thank our partners as we are now very close to fulfilling our pledge to install 300 defibrillators across Swansea.

“I’m very proud that the council has been able to financially back this initiative which is saving lives.

“I’m also grateful to the ward councillors who have supported this initiative by using part of their ward allowance to help fund defibrillators directly in their communities.”

Council Leader Rob Stewart added: “This equipment can easily mean the difference between life and death when someone suffers from a medical emergency such as a cardiac arrest.”

Each defibrillator is housed within distractive yellow boxes making them easily visible in an emergency. Residents can familiarise themselves with their locations in their communities by visiting https://www.defibfinder.uk/

Henry Gilbert, Chair of Heartbeat Trust UK, said: “Heartbeat Trust is proud to have partnered with Swansea Council in working to make this city the first to be defib-friendly “within the UK.  This has involved extensive community engagement and the strategic placement of defibrillators throughout the county, reinforced through public awareness campaigns and training.

“Sudden out of hospital cardiac arrest is one of the top three causes of death in the UK and the work undertaken in Swansea will greatly improve the survival rate.

“The determination and political will of the council, together with the support offered by individual ward councillors, have already resulted in lives being saved.”

Adam Fletcher, Head of BHF Cymru, added: “We are delighted to hear that Swansea Council is installing a further 300 defibrillators across the county.

“In Wales, there are more than 2800 out of hospital cardiac arrests each year, so we look forward to supporting the community with training on how to use the defibrillators, and ensuring they are available to those in need at a moment’s notice through registration on the Circuit website by visiting www.thecircuit.uk.”