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Surf Life Saving NSW was proud to partner with the former yellow Wiggle Greg Page and Nextdoor in a world record attempt for the most people trained in CPR at one time. The free virtual event beamed live from the Castle Hill RSL on 19 September was estimated to have reached around 25,000 people on the night, and an additional 5000 post the event.

Greg Page founded the Heart of the Nation initiative in the aftermath of him almost losing his life when he suffered a sudden cardiac arrest. He was on stage with the original Wiggles at a bushfire relief concert when the emergency hit, but due to fast thinking from those nearby trained in CPR and access to a defibrillator, Greg survived.

Hosted by Greg and some celebrity friends including Richard Wilkins, the “Heart of the Neighbourhood” edu-tainment livestream event included musical performances and a professional CPR and defibrillator training session presented by Dan Gay, Academy Training Manager for Surf Life Saving NSW.

Every year there are approximately 30,000 cases of sudden cardiac arrest in Australia, with the majority occurring outside a hospital setting. The survival rate for out-of-hospital cardiac arrest is only 10%. That means that for every one person that survives an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest, nine die. This is one of the worst survival rates in the world. The good news is that bystander CPR and early use of a defibrillator increases the chance of survival by around 70%.

Greg Page’s Heart of the Nation aims to build awareness of sudden cardiac arrest and get as many Automated External Defibrillators (AED) into businesses and the community as possible.

“Any attempt at resuscitation is better than no attempt,” according to Greg. “Our goal is to get as many people as possible educated and confident enough to have a go at CPR if they ever need to.”

Surf Life Saving’s Dan Gay took the thousands of people watching online from home through the basics of conducting CPR and using a defibrillator. Dan and some of the celebrity guests demonstrated the technique with the aid of the latest electronic CPR manikins, competing against each other to see who could perform chest compressions the most effectively.

“Everyone can and should be able to perform basic CPR, even kids,” said Dan Gay. “Good quality chest compressions and access to a defibrillator are the keys to keeping someone alive until help arrives.”

A competition hosted by the community online hub Nextdoor saw the neighbourhood with the most registered attendees for the CPR class win a prize which included a special song about their neighbourhood, composed and performed by Greg and his celebrity friends and a free AED for a central community location.

“It was fantastic to think we were able to reach so many thousands of people through this event and many more Australians will now know what to do if someone is in trouble,” said Dan Gay.

“Hopefully it will inspire people to do a full first aid or CPR training course which will give them the skills to save the life of a loved one if needed.”


Thursday 1 October 2020