Welsh Government is providing an additional £500,000 to improve community access to defibrillators and to boost out-of-hospital cardiac arrest survival rates in Wales. This, together with the £500,000 provided by Welsh Government in September 2021 brings their investment in defibrillators to £1 million in this financial year. The money has purchased defibrillators to help provide maximum lifesaving benefits in communities such as community groups, sports grounds and public organisations.
To ensure that each defibrillator can help the maximum number of people, each application will have to meet the criterion below. Only one defibrillator request per application form is allowed.
Closing date for applications in this second tranche is 30 April 2022.
All applications will be considered, and defibrillators allocated accordingly. If your application meets the acceptance criterion but the total number of applications exceeds the current tranche, your application will be forwarded to any future tranches.
The defibrillator application form needs to be submitted to Save a Life Cymru at: SaveALifeCymru@wales.nhs.uk
Every year in Wales, over 6,000 people will have a cardiac arrest in the community. This can happen to anyone at any age at any time. At least 80% will happen in the home but currently less than 5% will survive.
One major factor limiting the number of people who survive cardiac arrest is the ability to provide defibrillation within a critical time period. The first few minutes after the onset of an abnormal heartbeat, called ventricular fibrillation is crucial. This period can however be extended if a bystander starts chest compression CPR.
Historically, defibrillators have been placed in busy public areas and workplaces with the intention that they will be used to restart the heart of a person in cardiac arrest.
In Wales, many defibrillators have been purchased by organisations, including charities, local communities, businesses and commercial companies, gyms, schools and dental surgeries. However not all of these are available for public access, some are not registered on The Circuit (the national defibrillator network) and many are not available at all times of day or night for 365 days per year.
In addition, several defibrillators never get used because emergency services do not know where they are nor how to access them. That is why they need to be registered on The Circuit, to enable the Welsh Ambulance Service to direct bystanders to the nearest defibrillator and help to save lives.
A defibrillator (numbers allowing) will only be allocated to a community once confirmation to comply with the following essential criteria has been received:
is not applying to replace a lost, damaged or stolen defibrillator
has identified, with rationale, the best place to site a defibrillator (no other defibrillator should be within 500m of the proposed site)
has purchased or fundraised for a heated defibrillator cabinet and it has been installed on an external wall in an area that is accessible 24/7
has an electricity supply, so that the defibrillator is maintained at the right temperature, to prevent the battery and pads from deteriorating
will ensure the defibrillator will be available for public use 24/7
will agree to register the defibrillator on The Circuit database once it has been received
must appoint a named defibrillator guardian (to ensure regular maintenance)
has a backup named guardian to cover any absence
will ensure to hold CPR/defibrillation skill awareness sessions for individuals involved in the organisation/group
The Welsh Ambulance Service will provide the successful applicants with a defibrillator once the above has been confirmed by the completion of the application form below.
To check your nearest registered defibrillator please go to: NHS 111 Wales – Services near you
To find out more and to download an application form, visit: https://gov.wales/apply-for-a-community-public-access-defibrillator-2022