Restart A Heart at King Power Stadium

Restart A Heart Day Supported by Leicester City

Restart A Heart Day is being supported at King Power Stadium this Saturday with a series of workshops and activities seeking to focus on increasing resuscitation skills and defibrillator training.

- Restart A Heart Day coincides with Leicester City’s fixture against Manchester United on Saturday
- The Football Club are supporting the worldwide campaign with activities at King Power Stadium
- Dr Doug Sheehan of charity Heartwize will be providing information to fans outside the ground
- Dr Sheehan spoke about why CPR and defibrillator training is so important to help save lives

The annual campaign, which this year falls on Saturday 16 October, 2021 and coincides with Leicester City’s fixture against Manchester United, is an international venture, promoted by the Resuscitation Council UK and many organisations, such as Heartwize.

Dr Doug Sheehan, a cardiologist who is also Director and Trustee for the charity Heartwize, explained why it is so important to promote the vital public health message, in Leicestershire and beyond, in order to save more lives.

“The programme has been active for many years and it’s essentially to raise awareness of the serious problems that we have for people who are the victims of sudden cardiac arrest,” he commented.

If you have CPR and a defibrillator used promptly, you can triple the chances of someone surviving, from less than 10 per cent, to nearly 30 per cent. Across the country, that would be thousands of lives saved.

Dr Doug Sheehan

“We’re delighted to be able to support the Day at King Power Stadium, resuming the cooperation we’ve had with Leicester City Football Club in promoting what to do if you meet someone who has a cardiac arrest, getting more defibrillators available and changing the outcome for people who have a cardiac arrest when someone might be able to help them.”

Some starling statistics show just how vital the training can be.

Dr Sheehan continued: “Looking at the numbers, in the UK we have a very poor response and under 10 per cent of victims survive. Those who receive decent CPR have double the survival chance.

“And if you have CPR and a defibrillator used promptly, you can triple the chances of someone surviving, from less than 10 per cent, to nearly 30 per cent. That’s a fantastic improvement. Across the country, that would be thousands of lives saved.

“There are 60,000 occurrences each year and half the time someone is with the person, but often no CPR is performed, and no defibrillator is either available or used. A great result can come, and you can get a triumph rather than a tragedy. But so often it doesn’t happen, and someone dies who could have been saved.”

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Alan Birchenall
Alan Birchenall

The Birch spoke about his own experience and the importance of spreading awareness of CPR on Restart A Heart Day in 2019.

The Heartwize tent will be set up on Filbert Way this afternoon, showcasing methods of resuscitation using mannequins and trainer defibrillators. Dr Sheehan will be on hand to speak to passing fans who want to take a moment to look at the practical measures, while CPR techniques will be shown on the clapper boards and screens inside the stadium.   

In January 2017, Club Ambassador Alan 'The Birch' Birchenall' survived a cardiac arrest at the Leicester Mercury Sports Awards at Welford Road and was given life-saving medical attention through the use of a defibrillator.

“Please look at the chain of survival logos that are being provided thanks to the Club,” Dr Sheehan urged. “We’re hopefully going to be providing information for over 30,000 fans and it’s a great opportunity to learn a bit more about this topic and just remind people and point them in the direction of finding out a bit more.

“The awareness is very strong at Leicester City. Some 14 years ago, Clive Clarke was resuscitated by the club physio, Dave Rennie. There’s also been the resuscitation of Club Ambassador Alan Birchenall.

“On both these occasions, successful resuscitation methods were used immediately and the outcome is that they are now enjoying full and happy lives. Sadly, there are other cases where it doesn’t go so well.

If you do come across a victim of cardiac arrest, it’s most likely to be someone you know. You’d really want to give them the best chance of coming through.

Dr Doug Sheehan

"The international perspective was strong after Christian Eriksen collapsed during an international match. That has really reignited the focus on what can and should be done. When it happens, it’s very quick, very sudden.”

The local Heartwize programme is directing its efforts to getting the younger generation, particularly of secondary school age, trained up in the key elements of recognising someone who has been the victim of cardiac arrest.

“This includes taking action straight away, getting help, delivering CPR, being confident about using a defib if it’s available,” Dr Sheehan added.

“These are the things that are going to give someone the best chance of surviving. If you do come across a victim of cardiac arrest, it’s most likely to be someone you know. You’d really want to give them the best chance of coming through.”

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