'They can be the difference between life and death': Campaign to install defibrillators in Black Country town

A campaign has been launched to install three defibrillators in a Black Country town.

An emergency defibrillator
An emergency defibrillator

Stuart Henley, a fireman and community activist, has launched the campaign to help save people's lives in Halesowen.

The former councillor believes defibrillators are particularly important given the NHS and ambulance crews are under intense pressure due to Covid.

Mr Henley is looking to get sponsorship money to install the three life saving devices.

Plans have been drawn up to install them at The Swan pub on Long Lane, Merryvale Nursery on Merrivale Road, and Express Taxis Halesowen on Dudley Road.

Mr Henley said: "As I have been a campaigner in Halesowen for many years, I have noticed how Halesowen North has very few, if any, defibrillators on hand out of hours.

"I thought it would be great to try and get some added to the area.

"Also, I feel this is important due to the pressures which the NHS and paramedics are under at times.

Stuart Henley

"Having a defibrillator close by can be the difference between life and death in some cases."

Mr Henley added: "After being in the fire service for more than 22 years, I know how important time is in getting help there as soon as possible.

"Hopefully, the defibrillators will not be used but they are there, in case they are required."

The models Mr Henley is looking at will have codes to open them, which will be given by the emergency services when people call 999, if people are having a heart attack.

Call operators will provide the codes alongside directing people to the nearest defibrillators. The codes change after each use.

Figures from the British Heart Foundation show that there are more than 30,000 cardiac arrests outside hospitals each year.

In these situations, the chances of people surviving are as low as one in 10, making the existence of defibrillators within communities important.

Each defibrillator, and the associated cabinet which the equipment will be installed in, cost around £1,600.

To donate, visit www.justgiving.com.

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