Learn how to Restart A Heart

Colleagues working on campus are being offered the opportunity to learn life-saving skills.

Student volunteers are encouraging everyone to get hands-on

Some of the medical students helping train staff and students in life-saving skills during the campus event. October 2019

In light of covid-19, the steps you should take when performing cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) when someone suffers a cardiac arrest have changed – but the need to attempt CPR in an emergency situation hasn’t.

Out-of-hospital cardiac arrests happen across the UK but the use of CPR among the population has dropped over the course of the pandemic. By learning and performing CPR, you could be the difference between life and death for a loved one at home, a colleague at work or a stranger in the street.

Contributing to Resuscitation Council UK’s ‘Restart A Heart Day’, more than 75 School of Medicine volunteers have signed up to teach life-saving CPR on campus. 10 mannequins will be available to practise on, with each one sanitised thoroughly between use, as part of strict covid-19 safety measures.

Open to all, the event runs from 1-7pm in the Leeds University Union (LUU) precinct on Friday 15 October, with as many people as possible encouraged to take part.

A CPR workshop at a previous event

Volunteers teaching CPR at a previous event

Oli Sims, a final-year medical student and the project’s student lead, said: “We really want to encourage people to get involved – we’ve taken measures to mitigate covid risks so everyone can get hands-on.

“Covid restrictions have lifted, but rates of bystander CPR among the population have dropped. This means the lessons from our event could be more important than ever for the Leeds community.”

Whether you’ve learnt CPR before, or this is your first time, this is an opportunity to discover how guidance has changed during covid-19 and gain the skills and confidence to help if someone collapses and stops breathing normally.

The Restart a Heart Project in the School of Medicine runs as a collaboration between a committee of medical students, a student lead and members of staff from the Clinical Skills Education Team. They work collectively to plan, coordinate and execute events which further the School of Medicine’s commitment to make health education more accessible, and also achieve the Resuscitation Council UK’s goal of ensuring that everyone in the UK has the opportunity to learn lifesaving skills.

At the last in-person event on campus in 2019, 614 staff and students took up the offer of free training. And the running total trained in the academic year – including city centre sessions and other events – stood at a hugely impressive 1,375. 

This time around, volunteers will be stationed outside LUU, equipped with gazebos in case rainy weather strikes.

There’s no need to book – anyone, including staff, students and the wider Leeds community – can walk in and learn life-saving skills.

Restart a Heart logo with text 'Eight minutes to save a life?'


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