Lessons are full of life-saving as CPR added to timetable

Staff at Todmorden High School receive training with new defibrillator. Pictured are Tracy Jagger, Mike Kershaw and Waqar Hussain, and Emma Humfrey from North West Ambulance.
Staff at Todmorden High School receive training with new defibrillator. Pictured are Tracy Jagger, Mike Kershaw and Waqar Hussain, and Emma Humfrey from North West Ambulance.

Students and teachers at upper Calder Valley schools have been learning to become life-savers as part of a national health initiative.

Medics have been visiting Todmorden High and Calder High School to lead sessions with students and staff, showing them how to perform CPR.

The programme is being led by Dr Andrew Lockey, an A and E consultant at Calderdale Royal Hospital.

Simon Ferris, an independent first aid trainer based in Ripponden, is also involved and has been leading sessions with year seven pupils at Calder High on a weekly basis.

He said: “The enthusiasm of the pupils has been great and they will have the knowledge and skills to perform CPR, which is a skill for life which can save lives.

“This is a great asset to the local community and we are hoping to extend this to as many pupils as possible.”

Katherine Barton, who is involved with the project, said: “It has the potential to have a massive impact at a local and national level.

“We have met some fantastic people in the schools across Calderdale and I hope that we can inspire and motivate as many people as possible to take part in this training.”

Todmorden High School now has a defibrillator on its premises after linking up with the Sudden Adult Death Trust (SADS) UK.

Staff have been given training by the North West Ambulance Service on how to save lives if a cardiac arrest occurs.

Anne Jolly, founder of SADS UK, said: “SADS UK is pleased that Todmorden High School will benefit from having a defibrillator on the premises to re-start the heart if there is a cardiac arrest on the premises.

“Using CPR alone provides a five per cent chance of survival but using CPR along with the defibrillator increases the chance of survival to over 50 per cent.

“SADS UK is passionate about putting this life-saving equipment in place.”