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Published on 6th June 2019

Why you need a school defibrillator

You need a school defibrillator because every year there are over 30,000 incidents of Sudden Cardiac Arrest which happen outside of a hospital environment. It can strike anyone, anywhere, at any time. Your level of fitness, your lifestyle, your age or even whether you’ve previously been scanned for a heart condition are no guarantee that you’re safe from risk.

It’s estimated that between twelve and sixteen young people die from Sudden Cardiac Arrest in the UK every week. So it’s not surprising that 95% of parents think that first aid should be taught in school!

New proposals

The British Heart FoundationSt John’s Ambulance and the British Red Cross have been campaigning for first aid to be included on the school curriculum for many years. The government have now taken action and, from September 2020, basic health education will be compulsory in all schools.

Students will be taught basic treatments for common injuries, how to administer CPR as well as the purpose of defibrillators. The Chief Executive of the British Heart Foundation has called the new legislation: ‘a decisive moment in the battle to improve cardiac arrest survival rates’.

Do they go far enough?

Rapid defibrillation is the only proven way to treat Sudden Cardiac Arrest. While CPR is an essential part of the treatment, it only buys some time before a defibrillator arrives.

Fast action is also vital. If a victim is treated with CPR and defibrillation inside 60 seconds, their chance of survival is as high as 90%. Within 5 minutes, it’s 70% but it drops by 10% every minute after this. The average ambulance response time is eleven minutes, so the survival rate is only 5% if treatment is delayed until the emergency services arrive.

The best way to save someone’s life in the event of a Sudden Cardiac Arrest is to have a defibrillator nearby and to know its location.

However, despite many high-profile cases among athletes and numerous campaigns, there is still no law that requires defibrillators to be made available in schools, leisure centres, sports centres or public places.

Are your young family members currently protected by a school defibrillator?

The right defibrillator for your school

Getting the right unit is important. In an emergency, you need something that’s quick and simple for anyone to use – even a child.

Lifeline is the easiest AED to use on the market – you don’t need to have a medical background or any special training. You can’t make a mistake and it’s impossible to shock someone who isn’t having a cardiac arrest. The unit will assess the victim’s heart rhythm and make all the decisions, guiding you through each step of the rescue process by providing audio and visual prompts that are clear even in the noisiest of environments. With only two brightly lit oversized buttons, you can’t misuse it. Simply take the AED to the patient, apply the pads and wait for it to analyse. If the AED decides a shock is required then it will direct you to press the flashing shock button.

It’s particularly well suited for schools because it doesn’t look like an intimidating medical device – an important factor for anyone feeling daunted when using an AED for the very first time. The bright yellow colour makes it easy to find in an emergency and it’s very compact and lightweight which makes it easy to carry for even the smallest hands.


We offer tailor-made packages for a variety of different environments that provide you with everything you need to save someone’s life when Sudden Cardiac Arrest strikes.
Two of our packages are specifically designed for schools to make sure that staff and children are always protected:

Nursery and Primary School Defibrillator Package
– Lifeline VIEW AED
– Standard Battery
– Adult Pads
– Paediatric Pads
– Soft Carry Case
– Rescue Ready Kit
– Familiarisation Training

Secondary School Defibrillator Package
– Lifeline AUTO AED
– Standard Battery
– Adult Pads
– Wall Bracket
– Soft Carry Case
– Rescue Ready Kit
– Cardiosafe (CPR Assistant)
– Familiarisation Training

Martek Lifecare believes that every school should legally be required to have a defibrillator on site. If you would also like to support a change in legislation then please sign this petition.

To find out more about our AEDs or Sudden Cardiac Arrest, please contact us.