Andrew Patton, a 23 year old Irish Red Cross volunteer and medical student, has spearheaded a life saving community project by setting up the Dalkey Community First Responders.
A Community First Responder is a volunteer trained in basic life support and the use of an automated external defibrillator (AED) who assists the ambulance service by providing life-saving treatment to critically ill people in those vital minutes prior to the arrival of an ambulance. Andrew says, “The idea is to get CPR and early defibrillation started as soon as possible. Even if we are only a few minutes before the ambulance, every minute counts.”
The Dalkey Community First Responder group now has more than 18 volunteer, 15 of whom are now fully trained responders, whilst the remaining volunteers look after the administrative side of things.
Together the group will cover the areas of Dalkey, Glenageary and Killiney. Responding to situations where the patient is experiencing of chest pains, suffering a cardiac arrest or stroke or is choking. They will work in pairs and on a rota basis, to begin with this will be weekend nights, but as more people come on board the group hope to be able to offer the service 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
The Dalkey Community First Responder Group is affiliated to the Irish Red Cross in Dun Laoghaire Rathdown. They will mark their official launch with a family day on Killiney Hill, Saturday May 17th from 1-4pm.