Monday, 19 March 2012

Fabrice Muamba, defibrillators and prayer.

How tragic to hear the news of the young Congolese footballer who collapsed during Bolton Wanderers game against Spurs. Like everyone else I l really hope he'll make it.

I gather he received defibrillator treatment twice on the pitch. I hope he received the treatment early enough because time is of the essence. I spoke to a representative of the Resuscitation Council today who say that if you receive defib treatment within 3 minutes of cardiac arrest, that you have up to a 75% chance of healthy survival. The success rate is dramatically reduced after that time.

I mention this because I was in email correspondence with my gym today. It is a well known national chain and they inform me that none of their gyms have a defibrillator. They tell me that they have had a risk assessment and have been graded as 'low'. I'm a little concerned at this, not least because about 5 years ago at the gym I resuscitated a man who collapsed whilst on a treadmill. He survived and subsequently had an implantable defibrillator fitted. Community resuscitation is rarely successful and especially without a defib machine. So it was a real joy for me to know that he recovered well and it was touching to receive a note of thanks form his grateful wife.

I gather all Marks and Spencer and John Lewis stores have defibs. Surely of all place gyms should have them too. When I was present at the gym at the time the man collapsed,  the young staff were like the proverbial headless chickens and assumed that the man in question had simply fainted. I understand that their training is in simple first aid which would include only a fairly basic understanding of diagnosis and resuscitation training.

And listening to an interview from a concerned representative of the Players Football Association, it was interesting to hear in his last remark that he was praying for Muamba. I couldn't help reflecting how counter-cultural such a statement is (especially on the BBC) when just about everything else in the media is so scornful and cynical of religion in general and Christianity in particular.

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