On the launch of the Restart A Heart 2023 initiative, Christine Jardine, Liberal Democrat MP for Edinburgh West and Scotland Spokesperson is calling for all defibrillators to be registered and increased funding to cover underprivileged areas.
According to the charity, each year in Scotland more than 3,000 people have resuscitation attempted in the community after they have a cardiac arrest. Out of Hospital Cardiac Arrest Survival rate in Scotland is 9.7%. In Scotland, the most deprived areas are at greater risk of out-of-home cardiac arrest and, in these situations, a public access defibrillator can save a life but they're often disproportionately found in wealthy areas.
Christine said: "With heart issues every single minute counts so it’s vital for members of the public and bystanders to know where a defibrillator might be and how to use it.
“That’s why projects like The Circuit, the national defibrillator network, are crucial for bystanders and NHS/emergency staff to be able to locate the closest public access defibrillator to save a life.
“If a business or local community group is the guardian of one of them, I would encourage them to register it if they have not already, so its location can be discovered easily.
"I would urge the Scottish Government to unlock funding to provide life-saving Automated External Defibrillators (AED) in areas where there is currently a lack of access to devices. This will increase the chance of survival while we are still facing an ambulance waiting time crisis."