Two specialist cardiac nurses are hoping to raise awareness of sudden cardiac death by teaching cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) on the top of Snowdon, the highest mountain in Wales.
Julie Starling and Emma Williams will be joined by cardiac patients from across North Wales to draw awareness to the importance of training for CPR and the use of defibrillators.
“Starting CPR before the arrival of an ambulance can double the changes of a patient’s survival”
The pair have already generated thousands of pounds to help fund public access defibrillators across North Wales and will be seeking to collect further donations during their event in Snowdonia.
The British Heart Foundation-funded arrhythmia nurses are due to be joined by patients from their clinics, many of whom have previously received end of lifesaving use of CPR or defibrillators.
Ms Starling, who is based at Glan Clwyd Hospital, has supported cardiac arrhythmia charity SADS UK in raising awareness of the condition for four years.
She said: “Anyone, at any age, can suffer a sudden cardiac arrest. It’s unpredictable and can strike at anytime, anywhere, without warning.
“Starting CPR before the arrival of an ambulance can double the changes of a patient’s survival,” she said. “That’s why it’s so important that people understand how to perform basic CPR, or operate a defibrillator.”
“Early treatment is absolutely vital in saving the life of someone experiencing sudden cardiac arrest, and anyone can carry out CPR and deliver a lifesaving shock from an automated defibrillator,” she said.
“By heading up Snowdon with some of our arrhythmia patients we can raise awareness about how basic CPR skills could save somebody’s life,” she added.
Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board, which runs the two hospitals where the nurses run their clinics, noted that for every minute defibrillation was delayed, the chance of survival fell by 10%.
It highlighted that around 8,000 people die unnecessarily in Wales each year after a sudden cardiac arrest. Currently, just 8.6% of patients in the UK survive a cardiac arrest but in Wales this is as low as 3%.
Ms Starling and Ms Williams, who is based at Ysbyty Gwynedd, will be on the top of Snowdon on Thursday 21 September.
The event is supported by SADS UK, Achub Calon Y Dyffryn, BHF and Welsh Hearts.
Arrhythmia nurses to teach CPR technique on mountain top