Wingecarribee Defibrillator Program
Let’s Get Ready to Save Lives!
In Partnership with Accidental Health & Safety the Wingecarribee Shire Council have introduced a Public Defibrillator Program. The mission: to significantly improve emergency response capabilities in our community by making life-saving defibrillators accessible in key locations.
This initiative means that our community centres, halls and other venues are equipped with state-of-the-art Heartsine defibrillators
Defibrillators can save lives, but to make a difference you need to know where they are and how to use them. This information hub is designed to educate and prepare you, a valued member of our community, on how to effectively use these vital tools.
By exploring this page, you will learn about the locations of these defibrillators, understand how they work, and discover the significant impact they can have in saving lives. Our aim is for this resource to not only inform but also help you gain the confidence to act in an emergency.
How Defibrillators Work
Most of the time, the human heart works smoothly, beating regularly to keep blood flowing through our bodies. Electrical signals tell your heart when and how to beat regularly. But sometimes, those electrical signals can go haywire. Then your heart doesn’t know what to do, and instead of beating it starts to shake randomly.
As a result, blood doesn’t pump properly through our body, and without quick action that leads to death. We could liken it to a computer glitch. It’s as if the computer’s operating system has crashed, and it doesn’t know what to do anymore.
Here’s where a defibrillator comes in – it’s like hitting the ‘reset’ button on the computer. When a defibrillator delivers a controlled electric shock to the heart, it aims to snap the heart out of its chaotic state and reset it back to its normal rhythm. This shock is crucial because it gives the heart a chance to restart correctly, much like rebooting a computer allows it to function normally again.
The Impact of Quick Action:
The speed of response in a cardiac arrest is critical. Studies show that if a defibrillator is used within the first 3 minutes of cardiac arrest, the chances of survival can jump to as high as 80%. This is a significant increase compared to the average survival rate of less than 8%.
That’s why having defibrillators readily available in public places, like community halls, is a game-changer – it brings the life-saving ‘reset’ within reach, quickly.
Remember, using a defibrillator is designed to be straightforward. It guides you through each step with clear instructions, making it accessible for anyone to use, even without medical training. By following these instructions, you could turn a critical situation around, just like rebooting a computer to get it working again.In the next sections, we’ll guide you through finding these life-saving devices in our community and how to use them effectively in an emergency.
Locating Public Defibrillators
In an emergency, knowing the precise location of a defibrillator is crucial. As part of the Wingecarribee Defibrillator Program, the Wingecarribee Shire Council and Accidental Health & Safety have strategically placed defibrillators in various community locations. When the full roll-out is complete the locations will be as follows:
Each location will be equipped with clear signage to guide you to the defibrillator. Additionally, an online map of these locations is available for your convenience.
- Bowral Memorial Hall
- Bowral Senior Citizens
- East Bowral Community Centre
- Exeter Village Hall
- Hill Top Community Centre
- Loseby Park Community Centre
- Medway Village Hall
- Mittagong Memorial Hall
- Mittagong Senior Citizens Hall
- Moss Vale Senior Citizens Hall
- New Berrima Community Centre
- Penrose Hall
- Renwick Community Centre
- Sutton Forest Hall
- Welby Community Centre
- Wingello Mechanics Institute
- Yerrinbool Community Hall
Using Heartsine Defibrillators
Watch our step-by-step instructional video on how to effectively use Heartsine Defibrillators. This video provides a visual walkthrough, enhancing your understanding and confidence in using the device.
In a cardiac emergency, acting swiftly and confidently can be a lifesaver. Here’s a simplified guide on how to use a Heartsine defibrillator, specifically designed for public use:
- Call for Emergency Services: Always dial 000 immediately in a cardiac emergency.
- Start CPR: If the person is unresponsive and not breathing normally, initiate CPR immediately. Continue until the defibrillator is ready for use.
- Power On the Defibrillator: Locate and switch on the Defibrillator; it will provide you with voice-guided instructions.
- Attach the Pads: Open the pad package, and clear diagrams on each pad indicate where to place them on the person’s chest.
- Stand Clear and Analyze Rhythm: Ensure everyone is clear of the person. The defibrillator will analyze the heart’s rhythm and indicate whether a shock is needed.
- Deliver the Shock (if Advised): If the device advises a shock, ensure no one is in contact with the person and press the shock button.
- Continue CPR: After delivering the shock, follow the defibrillator’s voice prompts and continue CPR. Keep doing so until emergency services take over or the person exhibits signs of recovery.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About Defibrillators
Q1: Is it safe to use a defibrillator on someone with a wet chest?
A: Dry the person’s chest before applying the defibrillator pads for safety and effectiveness. There will be a towelette with each defibrillator.
Q2: Can I use a defibrillator on myself?
A: If you are experiencing a cardiac arrest you will be unconscious and unable to use a defibrillator on yourself.
Q3: Do I need training to use a public defibrillator?
A: No special training is required. Public defibrillators provide clear, step-by-step voice instructions.
Q4: What if I apply the defibrillator pads incorrectly?
A: Follow the voice prompts for correct placement. Make sure to take your time. Incorrect pad placement may reduce the effectiveness of the shock.
Q5: Can the shock from a defibrillator hurt the person?
A: Defibrillators only shock people who have suffered a cardiac arrest. As they are unconscious when shocked, they generally do not feel the shock.
Q6: Is there a risk of accidental shock when using a defibrillator?
A: The risk is minimal if you follow the instructions. Always ensure nobody is touching the person when the shock is delivered.
Q7: Can metal surfaces or jewelry interfere with a defibrillator?
A: Avoid placing pads directly over metallic items or jewelry, but their presence on the body generally does not interfere with defibrillation.
Q8: How long do the batteries last in a defibrillator?
A: Defibrillator batteries typically last for several years, but it’s important to check them regularly as part of routine maintenance.
Q9: Can a defibrillator be used more than once in a single emergency?
A: Yes, if needed, a defibrillator can deliver multiple shocks in a single emergency situation.
Q10: How do I know when to stop administering shocks and CPR?
A: Continue administering shocks and CPR until emergency services arrive or the person shows clear signs of recovery, like breathing normally.
Keen to test your skills?
Comprehensive Guide to First Aid and CPR
While learning how to use a defibrillator is essential, there’s more you can do to save a life. Consider exploring these additional resources:
- Explore Our DRSABCD Action Plan Article:
To learn the steps to saving a life in an emergency and how to perform CPR, check out the DRSABCD Action Plan Guide. This guide breaks down each step of the process, from Danger, Response, and Send for help, to Airway, Breathing, CPR, and Defibrillation. It’s an invaluable resource for anyone looking to enhance their first aid skills and confidence in handling emergencies.
- Enroll in a First Aid Course: Gain hands-on training by booking into a first aid course.
- Check Out Our Free First Aid Guide: Explore our detailed articles that cover various emergency situations. Read our first aid guide.
Conclusion: Being a Lifesaver in the Wingecarribee Shire
In conclusion, the success of the Public Defibrillator Program hinges not just on the availability of these lifesaving devices throughout the Wingecarribee Shire, but also on you – our community members. By taking the time to learn about defibrillators, where they are located, and how to use them, you’ve gained the knowledge to be a real life hero.
Your willingness to engage, learn, and potentially act in a critical situation embodies the strength and spirit of our community. We urge everyone to familiarize themselves with the resources provided, consider CPR training, and remember that in a moment of crisis, your actions could save a life. Together, we are creating a safer, more prepared community, ready to support each other when it matters most!