MP FOR Redditch, Rachel Maclean, is urging community organisations to apply for a Government grant to fund a life-saving defibrillator.
Backed by £1million of Government funding, the Community Automated External Defibrillators (AED) fund will provide at least 1,000 new defibrillators for community spaces across England.
Each new defibrillator will be externally mounted to enable 24-hour access by members of the public.
Defibrillators provide vital treatment, with the latest research showing the use of these devices within three to five minutes of a cardiac arrest increases the chance of survival by over 40 per cent.
To receive funding, community organisations will be asked to demonstrate that defibrillators be placed in areas where they are most needed, such as rural areas, places with high footfall or spaces for vulnerable people.
The funding is part of the Government’s drive to equip the health system with the right technology to help save lives.
Mrs Maclean said: “Credit must rightly go to Rob and Maggie Underwood who tirelessly fundraised to get defibrillators installed across Redditch – and there’s no doubt that they will have saved many lives.
“However, if we can get more defibrillators installed across the constituency we can save even more lives, so I would encourage community organisations in Redditch and the villages to apply for this Government funding.”
Rob said: “We welcome this announcement as a defibrillator, cabinet and external installation usually costs more than £1,400 – if the Government is able to sort this out for £1,000 each, that is to be welcomed.
“And, if so, the Government should help other charities nationwide to get the devices and installation for that price.
“Also, it is important that once installed, funds are found to maintain them which we estimate – for pads which need changing every two years and batteries every four – this will be more than £400 every four years.
“It will be important for the Government to fund this as well and the locations of the defibrillators must be in the right places to be effective.”
Visit defibgrant.co.uk/ to apply.