Lifesaving defibrillators have now been installed at dozens of train stations in Greater Manchester to help save people in cardiac arrest.
Every defibrillator has clear step-by-step written and spoken instructions built in, which explain how to use it on someone in an emergency, Northern explains, and the newly-installed machines will work to analyse a person’s heart rhythms to find out if an electric shock is needed, before delivering a shock if it’s required.
All units will be added to the national register and voluntary ‘familiarisation training’ will be made available by North West Ambulance Service (NWAS) to any station staff along with local communities.
84 defibrillators have now been installed at stations across the region.
A further six will be installed later this year, according to Northern, which will then mean that every station run by the rail operator Greater Manchester will have a defibrillator ready for use by the local community.
“All our defibrillators are in public places, and they are of huge benefit, not only to those travelling with us, but also the communities we serve,” explained Chris Jackson – Regional Director at Northern.
“We will continue to work hard to introduce defibrillators at even more of our stations in the future.”
Simon Elliott – Head of Rail Programme at TfGM – added: “I’m really pleased at the amount of lifesaving defibrillators that we have available at rail stations across Greater Manchester… [and] I am grateful to all partners for their hard work getting us to this point.
“Every second counts with cardiac arrest.
“Having defibrillators within easy access across our transport network for passengers, and for the local community, can have a huge impact on people’s lives.”
The NWAS has called the defibrillator a “vital” part in helping to save someone’s life.
David McNally – Community Engagement, Resuscitation and Collaboration Manager at NWAS – said: “Defibrillators are integral in helping to save someone’s life if they suffer an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest [as] every minute counts… and if basic life support and an automated external defibrillator is available in the first four minutes, then there is an 80% chance of survival.
“By Northern placing these accessible defibrillators on stations across the Greater Manchester area, it not only serves the users of the station but also the surrounding community.”
Featured Image – Northern (via Twitter)
Manchester secures £5.2m funding to build ‘supported accommodation’ for rough sleepers
Manchester has secured a whopping £5.2 million in funding to build new ‘supported accommodation’ designed to house rough sleepers.
After an application submitted to the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities’ Single Homelessness Accommodation Programme (SHAP) has been approved this week, Manchester City Council says it’s eager to help the former homeless “rebuild their lives”.
This means that, by working in partnership with housing and support providers Humankind, Jigsaw, and Great Places, the Council will oversee the creation of 42 units of supported housing across three different schemes.
The schemes are for single people with a history of rough sleeping and longer-term support needs.
According to the Council, these people will stay in this accommodation and receive personalised support until they are ready to “take the next step to independent living”.
This new £5.2 million funding allocation from the Government covers both the cost of creating the accommodation – which must be completed by March 2025 at the latest – and revenue funding to help run it for its first three years of opening.
“We are working with a range of partners to tackle the homelessness challenge on all fronts, from prevention in the first place to helping people into permanent, settled homes,” explained Cllr Joanna Midgley, who is the Deputy Leader of Manchester City Council.
“Securing this £5.2m funding for the city will help us create much-needed extra accommodation for those being helped off the streets who need significant long-term support before they are ready to live independently.
“It’s only part of a wider response but it will be a welcome addition to the accommodation and support available.”
The news of the successful application comes after the Council published its plan to get rough sleepers off the streets of Manchester and into temporary accommodation this winter back in early November.
With temperatures expected to reach as low as -5C by Friday, 29 November, the Met Office and UKHSA pushed out an amber heat-health alert on Wednesday, with the elderly, clinically vulnerable and the health sector in general said to be those most at risk.
Although the freezing weather obviously has the potential to affect everyone — with the likes of the North East and Northern Ireland having already been given a yellow weather warning as well — amber heat-health warnings are deemed to require an ‘enhanced response‘ as they are likely to significantly impact “across the whole health service” and possibly other sectors too.
Under the relatively new CHA (cold-health alert) system, anything beyond a yellow level alert means that it is expected that there will be increased use of healthcare services by vulnerable populations and an increase in risk to health to individuals over the age of 65, those with pre-existing health conditions, including respiratory and cardiovascular diseases and other vulnerable groups like rough sleepers.
As well as the Met Office offering their verdict, the UKHSA’s Head of Extreme Events and Health Protection, Dr Agostinho Sousa, said: “With a risk of widespread overnight frosts and some snow across the country this week, it’s important to check in on the wellbeing of those most vulnerable to the cold.
“Cold weather can have a serious impact on health, particularly older people, and those with pre-existing health conditions, as it increases the risks of heart attacks, strokes and chest infections.
“If you have a pre-existing medical condition or are over the age of 65, it is important to try and heat the rooms where you spend most of your time in[doors], such as your living room or bedroom.”
For those considered to be at risk during this cold snap and amber-heat health warning, the official government-sanctioned advice is that if you can’t heat all the rooms in your home, it is important to heat the rooms you spend the (i.e. living room in the day and bedroom before going to sleep) to at least 18 degrees if possible.
They also recommend wearing a few thin layers instead of one thick layer, as the former is better at trapping heat than just one big jumper etc.
Other advice on how to stay safe during these colder periods includes stocking up on food and medicine, keeping windows closed and reducing draughts at home, as well as getting vaccinated against flu and COVID-19.
If you or someone you know is in need of help, you can get in touch with the NHS on 111 and if it is an emergency please call 999 immediately.