Heart machine used twice for real-life emergencies during Doncaster defibrillator training session

A village’s defibrillator machine was used twice for real-life emergencies – as community volunteers underwent a training session unaware of the drama unfolding outside.

Residents were undergoing defibrillator training at Sprotbrough Community Library on Sunday afternoon – and when they emerged they discovered that the village's permanent heart machine outside the building had been used TWICE in two hours for real-life emergencies.

Sprotbrough Library

Sprotbrough Library

Volunteer Lynette Chipp said: “The strange thing was that at the end of the training, we noticed that the defibrillator was missing from its location on the outside of the building.

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“We had been learning how to improve someone's chances of surviving a cardiac arrest from 0% to 8% by using CPR and that by dialling 999 to enlist the help of an ambulance crew and a defibrillator the chance of survival improved to 85%. 

“While we were learning that our defibrillator had been deployed twice during that period!”

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“We were totally unaware that it had been accessed until after the session. They may not have been actual cardiac arrests but it was deployed and maybe the machine itself detected that the situation wasn't cardiac arrest or maybe the situation didn't deteriorate as far as feared.” 

She added: “We were very impressed and very grateful that the library had the defibrillator available and returned so promptly that it could be back 'on duty' so quickly and in time for the second call.”

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 The library’s defibrillator was donated in memory of John Fenn, a staunch library user and supporter, and came about from the initial donation of the machine by John's family.

Yorkshire Ambulance Service donated the cabinet and Doncaster Council installed it at the library with help from the Friends of Sprotbrough Library.
Meanwhile, Sprotborough Parish Council has agreed to provide new batteries and pads as needed.

Added Lynette: “We are very grateful to all those bodies who came together to make this happen. It has proved what a valuable community asset it is, without any doubt.”