September 23, 2020
Marae-based defibrillator to reduce heart death risk
St John's Ambulance has distributed 28 defibrillators donated by vendor Philips and the ASB Bank to sites in high risk Māori, Pasifika and rural communities, including one to Māngere's Ngā Whare Waatea.
The paramedic service treats about five people a day for cardiac arrest – and it says every minute without CPR or defibrillation reduces the chance of survival by 10 to 15 percent.
Counties manager Steve Walker says Māori and Pasifika have higher incidence of out of hospital cardiac arrests than Pākehā, which makes a community marae like Ngā Whare Waatea an ideal place to site the equipment.
"So we've looked for places where people congregate together, which fits nicely into the marae structure, and often marae have a bit of a healthcare provision as well. Where we can put them into places where it takes more than a few minutes for the ambulance to get there, it's beneficial for that community," he says.
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