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St John Ambulance Queensland and AgForce are joining together to urge all Queensland farmers to have a life-saving defibrillator on their farms to respond in the event of a sudden cardiac arrest.

 

St John Ambulance (Qld) CEO Alex Hutton said Heart disease is Australia's No.1 killer and it takes a precious life every 26 minutes. In many people this is sudden and without warning. Sudden cardiac death happens as a result of a cardiac arrest and can happen to people of all ages.

 

There is no national registry of sudden cardiac death. However, the Heart Foundation estimates suggest around 15,000 people die unexpectedly in Australia from sudden cardiac death every year.

 

This equates to around 10% of all Australian deaths1 that occur every year (153,000).  Sudden cardiac death rates have not declined in Australia at the same rate as other heart related deaths.

 

“Sudden cardiac arrest can happen to anyone, anywhere, anytime, no matter what their age or gender,” Mr Hutton said.

 

“For every passing minute without a defibrillator shock, the chance of survival reduces by ten percent – and with the average response time from an ambulance being 9-14 minutes, defibrillators can save lives. Without a defibrillator close by, the survival rate for cardiac arrest is somewhere between two and five percent.”

 

AgForce General President Grant Maudsley said most farmers lived and worked in remote locations a long way from medical assistance so having equipment like first aid kits and defibrillators on the property was very important.

 

“While farming is an extremely rewarding profession, it also has risks and dangers, so it’s incumbent on all of us to do what we can to ensure our workplace health and safety is of the highest standard possible,” he said.

 

“While you can always replace your farm machinery, your family members are irreplaceable.”

 

Mr Hutton encouraged all Queensland farmers to be equipped with defibrillators and everyone on the farm trained in their operation, with St John offering a one-off special on two of their top lifesaving defibrillators.

 

“We understand there is a cost implication to farmers and landholders in purchasing a defibrillator and training everyone. St John (Qld) will provide a free alarmed cabinet, carry case, responder kit, signage visibility kit and CPR training with every defibrillator purchased by AgForce members.

 

“Having a lifesaving defibrillator on the farm provides immediate peace of mind that our farmers, landholders and their staff have the best possible chance of survival in the event of a cardiac arrest.

 

“Regardless of how big or small, I encourage all farmers and landholders to contact St John to discuss their situation, and we will work together with them to find their best option for immediate and longer term First Aid coverage for their business,”

Mr Hutton said.

 

To learn more about the total first aid solutions and services St John (Qld) can offer, please visit www.stjohnqld.com.au

 

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MEDIA CONTACTS:

Paula Price 0417 785 228 (St John Ambulance Queensland)

Sarah Henderson 0427 626 853 (AgForce Queensland)

 

About St John Ambulance

St John Ambulance Australia Queensland is a self-funded charitable organisation with one dedicated purpose; to prevent and relieve sickness and injury from accidents, and to act to enhance the health and wellbeing of all people.  St John provides quality first aid products, services and training for our communities.

 

About AgForce Queensland

AgForce Queensland is a peak organisation representing Queensland's rural producers. AgForce strives to ensure the long-term growth, viability, competitiveness and profitability of broadacre industries of cattle, grain, sheep and wool in Queensland.

 

1 -  https://www.heartfoundation.org.au/your-heart/sudden-cardiac-death 

 

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