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Shoppers help responders to save lives

Shoppers at a Co-Operative store in Horsham have a defibrillator available after their success in helping the town’s Community First Responders.

The importance of the life-saving heart machines was emphasised the week before last when one was used to save the life of former football commentator Peter Brackley when he suffered a heart attack at the Holbrook Club. First Responders were involved in helping him and a locally-based machine was used.

Customers have helped the store raise more than £600 towards buying what is called an automated external defibrillator for the store, by filling collecting pots.

Meanwhile the responders have loaned one of the defibrillators to the store to acknowledge its support.

Kayleigh Logan, store manager, said: “I’m very proud that my store can give back to the

community. The co-operatives group purpose is the champion a better way of doing business in our community and I feel proud that as a team we have helped support the community responders and very pleased that we can support the local area now having a temporary defibrillator in store.”

Claire Matcheswala, a responder who delivered the machine to the store, said: “I’m really proud of the fact that we have been able to loan a defribrillator to the store, which is now being used as a temporary public access defibrillation site. We hope in time to be able to install a more permanent site along the Fitzalan Road parade for 24-hour access.”

The use of the machine combined with immediate Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation, involving chest compression, gives heart attack victims a much greater chance of survival. Experts say

every minute ‘CPR’ is not done a person’s chance of surviving a cardiac arrest drops by up to

10%.

Responders team leader Marc Harrold said:  “Providing public training in ‘CPR’ and also establishing

Public Access Defibrillation sites across Horsham is one of the teams objects and it is

pleased to be part of the Horsham Heartsafe project working with Horsham District

Council, Horsham and Mid Sussex Clinical Commissioning Group and other local charities in

promoting this.”

Anyone wishing to learn CPR or how to use a defibrillator may contact the scheme

through its website www.horshamresponders.org or Facebook page and it will advise when its  next free British

Heart Foundation Heartstart course is running.

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