Heartstart Scheme – Emergency lifesaving skills for Free

The Heartstart scheme, which is a British Heart Foundation initiative, teaches people CPR and other emergency lifesaving skills for free.

About the Heartstart Scheme…

According to the British Heart Foundation, every year 30,000 people in the UK have an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest, and the survival rate is less than 1 in 10.

The BHF are on a mission to change that by creating a Nation of Lifesavers – a nation where everyone knows how to save a life.

FREE Heartstart and Call Pull Rescue training courses are available across the UK, to teach people how to:

  • deal with an unconscious person
  • recognise a heart attack and a cardiac arrest
  • perform CPR
  • deal with choking
  • respond to serious bleeding

80% of out of hospital cardiac arrests happen in the home.  Learn CPR now and become a lifesaver – Find a course near to you.

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The course…

I recently attended a Call Pull Rescue course at Heartstart Thatcham, who brings the scheme to West Berkshire.

heartstart cpr

The practical training session took no longer than one hour and taught us how to deal with an unconscious person, how to perform CPR and also, how to operate and find your local defibrillator.

The demonstrations were clear and easy to understand and everyone was given the opportunity to practice the skills in small groups.

The volunteer teaching staff created a nice friendly atmosphere which put everyone at ease during the course.  Each small group had an instructor to assist throughout the training.

heartstart defibrillator

Even as an anxiety sufferer, I was comfortable enough to take part in one of the demonstrations to show how easy it is to operate a defibrillator without previous training.

You can find out more details on the Heartstart Thatcham course page.

It was surprising just how simple and safe the defibrillator was to use.  Thankfully, having now had some training, I would feel very confident in using one during an emergency.

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Locating a Defibrillator…

Simple-to-operate AEDs, are available in public places such as train stations, shopping centres, airport and leisure centres.  999 operators can quickly point you to a nearby device during an emergency.

Should you wish to know where your local defibrillators are, you can download the free Save a Life app to your phone.

If you already have an AED installed but cannot see it on the map, please email its details to defib@scas.nhs.uk so that it an be registered.

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Nearly 1 million people in the UK have been trained to perform CPR through the Heartstart initiative since 2014.  By 2020, they hope to have trained 5 million people.

Find a course near to you

Lisa x

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  • Reply
    Amy Fidler
    April 5, 2017 at 8:18 am

    Always a great idea to learn this x

    • Reply
      Lisa Hudson
      April 6, 2017 at 10:55 pm

      100% – I think it should be basic knowledge for everyone x

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