Learn how to save a life

Staff and students are being given the opportunity to learn life-saving skills in just eight minutes.

James Nicholson (far left), medical student and Restart a Heart student lead, with Laura Smith (far right), Head of Clinical Skills Education at the University, and volunteers Claire Ozber, Charlotte Fletcher and Maiya Anning at the Worsley Building Restart a Heart Day event last year

For the second year running, volunteers from the School of Medicine’s Clinical Skills Team will be staging a series of free drop-in sessions on campus and in the city centre, as part of the global Restart a Heart Day initiative on Wednesday 16 October.

An impressive total of 1,164 people learned life-saving skills in Leeds thanks to the success of last year’s student-led campaign, which received widespread praise.

And the dedicated team behind the initiative is hoping to smash that figure this time around.

Medical student, Phoebe Stocker, said: “Last year on #RestartaHeartDay, we taught almost 500 people across campus how to perform CPR and use a defibrillator, as part of the global effort to improve people's life-saving skills. And this year we're on a mission to increase that figure.

“Two thirds of the UK population doesn’t know how to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), and for every minute a person suffering a cardiac arrest doesn't have chest compressions, their chance of survival reduces by 10%. A big team of students and staff from the School of Medicine will be outside Leeds University Union on #RestartaHeartDay to improve your confidence in performing CPR and using a defibrillator. Why not take a colleague along or train as a team?

“You never know when you might come across someone suffering a cardiac arrest, so make sure you’re part of the life-saving community prepared to respond.”

Restart a Heart Day CPR training sessions on campus are a huge success. October 2018Volunteers helping run the training session in the University Precinct last year 

Events will be held in the University Precinct and Albion Street (dates and times below). The drop-in nature of these events allow for anyone to pop by and learn CPR skills, as well as familiarising themselves with a public-access defibrillator (AED) … all in the space of just eight minutes.

A defibrillator is a device that gives a high-energy electric shock to the heart through the chest walls to someone who is in cardiac arrest. The quicker the patient can be given shocks in combination with CPR, the greater the chance of successful resuscitation.

Working in partnership with the University's Facilities Directorate, Leeds University Union, the Resuscitation Council (UK), Leeds City Council, the British Heart Foundation, Leeds Heart Beats and Yorkshire Ambulance Service, the drop-in sessions support the initiative to install defibrillators across campus, with more than 30 of the life-saving machines now in place (click on the Facilities tab of the campus map to see where they are located). These are all registered with the Yorkshire Ambulance Service.

Jason Carlyon, Restart a Heart Day Lead for Yorkshire Ambulance Service and the Resuscitation Council (UK), said: “It’s great to have the support of the University of Leeds, which has organised a full programme of activities to help create even more potential lifesavers across the county.”

LITE touch

Leeds Institute for Teaching Excellence (LITE) is funding the research team within Restart a Heart Leeds to the tune of £1,000 to undertake an evaluation of the project by looking at the teaching and other skills students gain by participating in it.

Funding comes via the LITE Student Education Catalyst Fund, which helps boost staff and student innovation in education across the University.

Professor Tina Overton, Director at LITE, said: “It’s not often LITE gets the chance to help support a project that could be the difference between life and death, so we are especially delighted to be able to offer a small pot of funding to Ross for this important work.

“It’s also a key part of the Institute’s work to collaborate more closely with students, whether they be undergraduates or postgraduates. Our Student Education Catalyst Fund allows us to do this, and hopefully this will happen much more in the future.”

Volunteers demonstrating CPR skills and how to use a defibrillator  

Get involved

About 40 volunteers will be manning the stations at the University Precinct between 2 and 7pm on Wednesday 16 October and outside the Trinity shopping centre in Albion Street between 10am and 5pm on Saturday 19 October.

Just pop along and take part.

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