The Community First Responders in Wicklow Town have voiced their frustration following damage to a Defibrillator in Wicklow Town.
On Monday morning of this week it was discovered the case of a Public Access Defibrillator which is located in the Market Square area of the town had been damaged.
The Group said the Defibrillator has been removed until they can get a new weatherproof case.
Earlier this year the Community First Responders Ireland called for cross party support for the Life Saving Equipment Bill 2018 which would impose a maximum sentence of 5 years imprisonment or a €50,000 fine or both for those convicted of interfering with a defibrillator or life buoy.
CFRs and other voluntary groups around the country have fundraised to purchase and install these lifesaving devices.
Dr David Menzies, Medical Director of CFR Ireland said:
“Damage to, or theft of a defibrillator installed for public use could be a death sentence for a patient if it were not available for a patient in cardiac arrest as a result. It is that serious. Locking up AEDs isn’t the ideal solution – you wouldn’t lock up a fire extinguisher.”
In the event of a cardiac arrest, CPR and defibrillation within the first 10 minutes is the most important intervention. The patient’s chances of survival drop by 10% for every minute, treatment is delayed. There are estimated to be over 13,000 AEDs in Ireland.