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Health / Defibrillator registration reminder

A REMINDER has been issued for people to register defibrillators in Shetland with the ambulance service after concerns were raised that some may be going under the radar.

The issue was raised at a meeting of Shetland’s community safety and resilience board on Tuesday.

North mainland councillor Alastair Cooper asked ambulance team leader Angus Galbraith if the service was aware of where all installed defibrillators are located in Shetland.

Galbraith said the service does try to encourage people to register defibrillators with them so they could be identified in emergencies.

“That has not fully happened, but it is better than it was,” he said.

A defibrillator is a device that gives a high energy electric shock to the heart through the chest wall to someone who is in cardiac arrest.

An increasing number of public defibrillators have been installed around Shetland in recent years, mainly thanks to fundraising in the community.

There are registers and online maps of defibrillators, but Galbraith said that while the local ambulance service has a handle on where devices provided by the charity Lucky2BHere are located, it has less knowledge of ones from other organisations.

“I think it is important that with something like that the community is aware that they are there and we are aware that they are there,” Cooper responded.

He suggested community councils could be tasked with keeping an eye on logging any new defibrillators in their area.

“It is a live issue and somebody’s life may depend on it,” Cooper said.

Police chief inspector Lindsay Tulloch also noted that there was one instance of a defibrillator being moved, with good intent, without records being updated.