TORONTO, Dec. 6 /CNW/ - A Toronto resident is alive today thanks to the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Ontario, Toronto Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Cardiac Safe City Public Access Defibrillation Program and some helpful citizens.
On November 30th, the last day of CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) Month, Gayle Pollock, Commander Toronto EMS Safe City Program and Joanne Côté, Manager Resuscitation Programs at the Heart and Stroke Foundation, announced the second save of 2010 for the Toronto EMS Safe City Public Access Defibrillation Program and the 27th life saved by the Heart&Stroke Restart a Heart, a Life™ program and the Chase McEachern Tribute Fund.
"We are very excited to have a second save this year. It is great to see how a bystander can save a life! In February we had our first save for 2010, thanks to quick responders reacting to a cardiac arrest in a skating rink. This second save is a great way to end November - we hope to save more lives this year through this program", said Commander Pollock.
This City wide initiative, led and managed by Toronto EMS, is a partnership with not-for-profit organizations like the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Ontario. Toronto EMS places, monitors, and maintains the automated external defibrillators (AEDs) in public places and also trains point persons in the facility to use the equipment. The Heart and Stroke Foundation of Ontario provides the funding for the equipment and the training for this life saving program.
"Thanks to our strong partnerships and generous individual donations, especially during November, CPR Month, we have now deployed over 2,600 AED units in communities across the province, and as a result 27 lives have now been saved," says David Sculthorpe, CEO, Heart and Stroke Foundation of Ontario. "The most recent life that was saved is a testament to what happens when individuals within the community learn CPR and use an AED when it is within reach."
Research indicates that up to 85 per cent of cardiac arrests occur at home or in public places and almost half are witnessed by a family member, or friend. In Ontario alone, approximately 7,000 sudden cardiac arrests occur every year. The survival rate of victims for an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest is less than five per cent. However, defibrillation when used in conjunction with CPR in the first few minutes after a cardiac arrest can dramatically improve a person's chance of survival by up to 75 per cent.
For more information on the Heart&Stroke Restart a Heart, a Life Program™ and the Chase McEachern Tribute Fund visit: www.heartandstroke.ca/restart.
Over 1,000 AEDs are administered by Toronto EMS Cardiac Safe City, with their partners like the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Ontario.
Toronto EMS is the sole provider of emergency medical services to the City of Toronto. Staff at Toronto EMS are dedicated medical professionals with a passion to provide excellence in patient care to the citizens of Toronto and employs 1,200 people, including over 850 paramedics, 120 EMD's and supported by a fleet of 155 ambulances. Toronto EMS responds to over 750, 9-1-1 calls for emergency medical help per day and is one of the largest services in North America. It is internationally renowned and regarded as a role model for research, development and training in leading edge EMS practices.
For more information on Toronto EMS' Cardiac Safe City Program visit:
For further information: For further information:
Diane Hargrave, Heart and Stroke Foundation of Ontario, 416-467-9954 ext. 104, [email protected]
Kim McKinnon, Coordinator Public Information & Media, Toronto Emergency Medical Services, 416 392-2255 or [email protected]