When people decide to run for elected office, they also select a platform to run with. They may strongly campaign on promises to give more aid to the public, cut government spending or they may choose any other topics they feel are important or will help them get the votes needed to win.
On a personal level, they may also be involved in various campaigns to raise awareness or to make changes. However, they don’t always get to experience, in elected office, just how much of a difference what they support will actually make.
The Labour Party’s Andy Burnham, mayor of Greater Manchester, England, reported the Mirror, got first-hand experience with something he has personal experience campaigning for, which is “defibrillators installed across the region.”
On Jan. 8, 2018, Burnham saw a 73-year-old man collapse due to a heart attack outside of Town Hall.
Burnham ran inside the building and grabbed an AED defibrillator and called 999, which is the British equivalent of the United States’ 911.
An Army reservist was also on the scene and carried out the CPR that helped save the man’s life.
Burnham has been credited for his actions, but humbly passed the credit on to the reservist, saying, “Robyn…took control of the situation, she was truly amazing.”
He also explained that others played a role in saving the man, “…[I] want to thank the staff at the front desk [of Manchester Town Hall] who supplied [the AED defibrilator] within seconds.”
The situation reaffirmed to Burnham the need that exists for defibrillators to be more readily available; “It makes me think that we should have public defibrillators in communities across Greater Manchester and an open public register of them. As Mayor, I intend to work to make that happen — they really do save lives.”
The heart attack victim has been unidentified, but his wife, also unidentified, stressed how much she also believes defibrillators need to be more readily available.
“It was such an extraordinary event. It’s so important that people understand how important CPR and defibrillators are. Only 20 percent of people who have an out of hospital heart attack survive — he was very lucky.”
In the United States, the American Heart Association, which provides AED defibrillator training courses, also advocates for public placement of the devices, noting on their website that they belong “in targeted public areas such as sports arenas, gated communities, office complexes, doctor’s offices, shopping malls, etc.”
The American Red Cross also offers training courses that take just a few short hours that then provide two-year AED/CPR certifications.
According to the American Red Cross website, it’s important for members of the public-at-large to get AED/CPR training because “the average response time for first responders once 911 is called is 8-12 minutes. For each minute defibrillation is delayed, the chance of survival reduces by approximately 10%.”
To further illustrate the importance of everyone getting AED/CPR training, the American Red Cross created a video that features a 17-year-old who saved a man’s life with such training. The teen shared that he and the man he saved are now friends.
The Mirror reported that the man who’s life was saved by the actions of Mayor Burnham and Robyn underwent surgery but has recovered. His wife said that the avid crossword puzzle fan was back at it just four days later.
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.