WHERE TO START
"You don't have to be a fireman to use a fire extinguisher, you don't have to be a paramedic to use a defibrillator."
You have made the right decision to investigate providing a life-saving defibrillator for your community/business. London Hearts Charity works with you every step of the way to implement your project, bringing it to completion and ensuring it is fully supported and continues to function correctly for years to come.
The first step prior to any defibrillator installation is to find the best location to site it. A number of factors including high footfall and relative ease of access to equipment should it be required in an emergency situation. Village Halls, Pubs, Disused Telephone Boxes are good locations to consider given they are normally centrally located to act as the hub for a community. Any public access defibrillator (PAD) site will need a power point for the defibrillator cabinet, this keeps the defibrillator at optimum temperature during the colder months as the defibrillator has it's own internal battery
Supporting or purchasing a community defibrillator scheme is not just about the defibrillator and the cabinet. It is very easy for a public body to go down the route of seeking the cheapest combination of defibrillator and cabinet without taking into account the differences between defibrillators - not all are suitable or ideal for community use - and similarly for the cabinets.
In recent years several new makes of "defibrillator cabinet" have appeared on the market. Many of these are not made by specialist cabinet makers, do not comply with many of the health and safety rules, regulations and, guidelines issued, and are there to seek sales profit rather than protect the defibrillator. The first step in assessing which equipment will be fit for purpose is to have an idea of where the unit may be located. For instance, IP65 Stainless Steel cabinets when going outdoors will weather for years to come but may not be necessary for an indoor location or Telephone Box. To see which cabinet may be suitable for you please refer to our Cabinet Types.
Firstly, no price can be put on a life and the value of a defibrillator but a rough estimate incorporating a complete defibrillator and cabinet project range from approximately £1000 - £1800 depending on the equipment chosen.
*Please note that installation is not included as a standard, although we will always try and help find a recommended electrician.
The last cost to consider is the electricity for powering a defibrillator cabinet and the replacement of the battery. We advise that this should be very low, around £10-£30 per annum dependent upon climate. The electricity is needed to heat the cabinet to eliminate the possibility of the electrodes freezing in winter. The battery will need changing every 5 years costing around £120-£160 depending upon the model of Defibrillator.
London Hearts provides a training awareness session as part of a PAD package. There is no ‘legal’ requirement to train users in the defibrillator. However, failing to provide and recommend a training regime may be viewed as being negligent. Thus again we strongly recommend a community has in place a training regime that is not just an initial plan but provides for longevity and resilience. Whilst ideal, it is not realistically possible to train all potential users of the equipment in a public setting, and therefore most communities use ‘best endeavours’ to ensure training is made available to the community.
London Hearts can offer installation with costs varying £100-£150 and we can liaise with you to advise on dates the electricians will be in your area. It can be more cost-effective to get your local electrician to fit the equipment and we would advise considering this option as well.
The installer must be able to produce a certificate to state that the install has been done to British Standards (Usually a BS7671, but can also be referred to as a Minor Electrical Installation Works or Electrical Installation Certificate).
London Hearts can also provide installation instructions for each cabinet type to assist with installation.
Whilst there is no accounting for how long the fund-raising stage may be, upon confirmation of an order we aim to provide the equipment within 3-5 days. Once the installation is complete, we will then register your site with your local ambulance service. Confirmation from the Ambulance service that your site is now on their system may take a week or so. Therefore realistically completion of a project may take 2-3 weeks. Training is generally booked a few weeks after delivery.