Our PAD on your PAD

Southwater needs more PADS!

Defibrillators are devices that send an electric pulse or shock to the heart to restore a normal heartbeat in the event of cardiac arrest i.e. when someone has ‘died’. ‘PADs’ are Public Access Defibrillators i.e. a defibrillator available to the public 24/7.  At the moment we have 13 PADs across the village, that we are responsible for, as shown on the map below.  

In the event of a medical emergency, and depending on the circumstances, if there is a PAD within 400m of the incident, a 999 caller may be advised to send someone to get the defibrillator. Typically, we get notified about once a week that one of the Southwater PADs was close enough to a medical emergency to have been considered for use.  

The gaps on the map where we have no PAD coverage are obvious and significant.  The constraint we have run up against in these areas is an available electricity supply.  PADs need a 24/7 power supply, not to charge the defibrillator but to run a thermostatically controlled heater so that the adhesive on the pads - that go on the patient and deliver the shock - doesn’t go off by getting too cold.  The heater only kicks in when the temperature inside the cabinet drops below freezing.  The most recent figure I have come across is that this could consume around £10 of electricity per annum.

To date all of our PADs have been on Public or Commercial premises of one form of another but there simply aren’t any of these available in the areas where we have no PAD coverage at the moment.  To address this, we want to pilot installing a PAD on a residential property.  Ideally, we want something like a garage wall, or similar, that backs onto the public pavement so that to access the PAD there will be no need to go on to the property.  

We will have a simple, formal agreement with the property owner where we would agree to: fund the PAD and its installation*, be responsible for all aspects of maintaining the PAD and the processes that go with this e.g. keeping SECAmb informed of its status.  What we would  ask from the property owner is that they: give us permission and access to install the PAD (it will be installed by a professional electrician); agree to have it hard-wired in and to pay for any electricity used.  The agreement would include a clause that allowed either party to terminate it with one months’ notice in which event we would take the PAD away. 

Once installed, we would invite all local residents to a session explaining what PADs and defibrillators are and how to do CPR (cardio pulmonary resuscitation) – the pushing on the chest bit that keeps someone ‘alive’ until a defib arrives!

Well done for reading this far, I will get to the point now!  We are looking for property owners in the East of the village – think Blakes Farm Rd, Cedar Drive, Roman Lane – to volunteer to be a pilot site for what would be a novel approach to getting more PADs into local communities.  If you are up for it, and think your property is suitable, please get in touch, either post below, or DM us, to have an informal, no-obligation chat about how we can make this work.

Please fire away with any questions or helpful suggestions below, it would be great to get a conversation going on this.

Over to you Southwater 😊