Life-saving machines underused due to misinformation
DANGEROUS misconceptions may be deterring good Samaritans from using the newly acquired defibrillators in Gayndah, according to freemason Bill Turner.
With Gayndah recently receiving 15 defibrillators courtesy of the community gambling benefit fund, Mr Turner believes there are inaccuracies concerning the use of these devices.
"It's been rearing its head all the time since we've been granted these machines,” Mr Turner said.
"Some of those in the community believe you can be sued if the person you're trying to help ends up dying due to the use of defibrillators.
"So much so, I've had to start passing the Good Samaritan Act around the community to stop the gossip.”
The law in question is the legal protection offered to those who offer assistance to someone who may be injured or hurt.
This protection encourages bystanders to aid those in an emergency situation, without any civil liability.
Queensland Branch for the Australian Resuscitation Council chairperson Darryl Clare states these public access defibrillators are designed to be used by people with limited or no training.
"It will not shock a person who does not need defibrillation, and will guide the user through the process with visual and voice prompts”, Mr Clare said.
"It even does a self test everyday, with very little maintenance required other than battery and pad replacement every few years.”
Statistics from the Victorian Ambulance Cardiac Registry of 2016-17 indicated more patients shocked by a bystander were discharged alive (55 per cent) than those who waited to be shocked by ambulance paramedics (28 per cent).
With statistics such as this, it's important to assist those who are in emergency situations with first aid, as well as dialling 000.