Local home care company Home Instead Dartford is sharing their specialist knowledge in order to keep people safe and well in the local community. Through free monthly sessions, run at the Orchards Shopping Centre, Home Instead is offering potentially lifesaving cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and defibrillator training.

In the UK, there are over 60,000 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests (OHCA) a year. A defibrillator is at its most effective when administered within the first minute of someone collapsing. If used within the first minute, the survival rate can be as high as 90%, demonstrating that not only does having a defibrillator close by make an enormous difference, but so does having people around who know how to use one. 

One person who has taken full advantage of the community sessions is Bonnie McGhee, who works locally in the cardiology unit at Queen Elizabeth Hospital. Bonnie sadly lost her father in January to cardiac arrest. She was determined to turn a negative into a positive by fundraising for a defibrillator which is now installed in the Clockhouse Community Centre in her father, Jeffrey Anthony Mee’s, memory.

Bonnie wanted to ensure that people knew how to use the defibrillator and when she learned that Home Instead offered community training sessions she jumped at the opportunity to get them involved.

Christina Uppenkamp, owner of Home Instead Dartford, said: “We have been running sessions in the local community for some time now.

“As a care company specialising in care of the elderly we ensure that our team have all the skills to keep people safe and well. The community training is our way of sharing our expert knowledge for the good of everyone in the local area.

“People are taught CPR,  how to use the defibrillator and how to put someone in the correct recovery position.

“We are delighted that Bonnie found us and were so touched by her story. It was an absolute pleasure to run a session for her.”