Council's hearty support for life-saving campaign

24 October 2014 in Health
Newham Council is supporting a campaign to raise awareness of the importance of having life-saving equipment in local business premises.
Cllr Furness with the London Ambulance service
The London Ambulance Service’s Shockingly Easy encourages companies to get a defibrillator, a machine that can shock the heart to restart it when it’s in cardiac arrest.

Newham councillor Clive Furness, mayoral adviser for adults and health, helped the launch the campaign at Stratford Shopping Centre where ambulance crews were on hand to show businesses and shoppers how they can become heroes and save someone’s life.

Councillor Furness, (pictured left), said: “We are proud to support the Shockingly Easy Campaign and I urge every business in Newham to get a defibrillator installed. It’s absolutely vital that these life-saving machines are within easy reach of anyone who suffers a cardiac arrest as it could save their life.”

The council’s offices at Newham Dockside are already equipped with London Ambulance Service accredited defibrillators and it is hoped other organisations in Newham will follow suit.

London Ambulance Service chairman, Richard Hunt CBE, said: “Our latest data shows there were 304 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests in Newham in a year and 43 of these occurred in the street and locations like workplaces, gyms, shops, public transport and places of worship. When you have a cardiac arrest your heart stops, blood is no longer being pumped around the body and you are clinically dead.

“It’s crucial that cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and defibrillation is given to the patient in the first three to four minutes. Around 28 per cent of people survive an out of hospital cardiac arrest but, where there is a defibrillator and someone trained to use it, the chance of survival can increase to 80 per cent.”

The Shockingly Easy campaign aims to get at least 1,000 extra defibrillators in shops, businesses, gyms and high footfall areas across London.

For more information on how to get a defibrillator for your organisation and training on how to use it call the Shockingly Easy campaign on 020 7783 2366 or visit