McGrigor calls for roll-out of portable automatic chest compressors to Highlands & Islands ambulances

Jamie McGrigor, Highlands & Islands Conservative MSP, is calling on the Scottish Government to roll out to ambulance crews in the Highlands & Islands a new technology being used by paramedics in the Lothians.  Jamie is asking for to ambulance crews in his region to be given access to life-saving portable automatic chest compressors. These devices, which can be strapped around heart attack victims, can within 20 seconds be used to take over the physical hands-on work of Cardio-Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR).

Speaking today at Holyrood, Jamie said:

“Last night, I joined a reception held in the Scottish Parliament by the Scottish Ambulance Service where they demonstrated the latest technology which was available.  I was very impressed by the professionalism and enthusiasm of the paramedics and ambulance staff whom I met, and also particularly struck by some of their latest technology, specifically the portable automatic chest compressors for use on heart attack victims, which are only so far available in the Lothians. 

“Their use means that, in Lothians, the chances of surviving a cardiac arrest if treated with this machine go up to 28%, whereas, anywhere else, the chances are only 17%; that is a big difference, and I am sure that this technology should be rolled out all across Scotland, especially in my area of the Highlands & Islands where peripherality increases risks.  I have written to the Health Secretary to ask him if and when this roll-out is likely to take place, and urging him of the necessity of making use of this valuable new tool which is now available to our hard-working ambulance crews”.