In the last couple of years, the Lane Cove Council has rolled out a programme of installing defibrillators at local sports grounds and high traffic public areas.
This programme has paid dividends. In 2018 the defibrillator at Kingsford Smith Oval was used to save a man’s life.
The St Michael’s Football Club was playing soccer at Kingsford Smith Oval. They have over 1400 players registered in the Over 35’s Divisions. In 2018 St Michael’s Football Club players were involved in two life-saving events when players collapsed mid-game.
Both players had suffered sudden cardiac arrests. Both players would have died without the immediate intervention of St Michaels’ players and very importantly the use of available Defibrillators to restart their hearts. Both players reached the hospital alive and had successful emergency surgery.
Professor Dominic Fitzgerald, Richard Hawtin and Pete Grantham were all involved in helping a player, but on both occasions, Dr John Galicek was involved. John and Dominic are both Doctors and knew exactly what to do.
It’s great that a medical professional was available, however, Dr Galicek said the machines are so sophisticated they talk to you and tell you exactly what to do, meaning all players would be able to operate them if required.
How To Use a Defibrillator?
“You don’t need to be trained as a nurse or paramedic, or have any experience, to use one of those machines,” he says.
“When the heart has stopped beating, every second counts. Grab the AED, turn it on, and follow the instructions.
The AED will tell you to remove all the clothing from a person’s chest, peel the plastic from the pads and apply the sticky pads to the person’s bare skin as shown in a diagram on the device.
CPR can then be paused while the AED assesses the person’s heart rhythm. The AED will give a warning to stand back while the shock is applied.
“You shouldn’t be touching the person at this stage, it’s possible to get an electric shock transferred,” says Dr Shalaby.
The AED then tells you to keep doing CPR for two minutes and then analyse the heartbeat again.”
Quick Action Helps
23,000 Australians suffer cardiac arrest every year. That’s 63 people every day. But only 1 in 10 survive a cardiac arrest.
If the heart stops pumping, it is known as a cardiac arrest.
Cardiac arrest can occur without warning. It is triggered by an electrical malfunction in the heart that causes an irregular heartbeat (arrhythmia). This malfunction can stop the heart from pumping blood around the body.
Performing CPR is extremely important in this situation by enabling blood to continue pumping to vital organs, such as the brain, before an ambulance arrives.
List of Defibrillators in Lane Cove
In a Facebook post, the St Michael’s Football Club stated:
“The bad news is that there are very few north shore sports grounds with installed Defibs (happily several of the Lane Cove grounds do have them), despite regular lobbying to Councils by NSFA and so our club is currently discussing the details of how to purchase some portable machines that will be present at future matches. These items are not cheap but given their repeatedly proven ability to save lives on football fields over the last couple of years we think it prudent to acquire some in the very near future.”
The Lane Cove Council provided In the Cove with a full list of Defibrillator locations in Lane Cove Council run locations.
|Lane Cove Plaza – near Pedestrian Crossing on Longueville Road|
|Living and Learning Centre|
|Pottery Green Oval|
|Lane Cove Council Civic Centre|
|Lane Cove Library|
|Lower Field – Blackman Park|
|Bob Campbell Oval (Gore Creek)|
|Burns Bay Reserve|
|Kingsford Smith Oval|
|Note: One will be installed in The Canopy|
There are also machines at the Lane Cove Aquatic Centre and Greenwich Baths maintained by the operators of those facilities. Woolworths Lane Cove also has a machine near the escalators going down to the carpark.
In addition to the above list, Lane Cove Council has provided funding for a machine to be installed at the Lane Cove Men’s Shed. It has also provided letters of support for groups submitting grant applications to the NSW Office of Sport.
The Local Sports Defibrillator Grant Program allocated $4 million over four years to assist sporting clubs across NSW in the purchase and maintenance of Automatic External Defibrillators (AEDs). The programme finished in April 2020. Hopefully, this program will be extended when sports resume.
Do you know of a public place in Lane Cove that needs a Defibrillator?
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