New defibrillator funded by cardiac arrest survivor unveiled at Kineton Playgroup

Andy Collett survived a cardiac arrest with the help of CPR and a defibrillator.

Saturday, 13th July 2019, 7:49 pm
Ali Collett, her husband, Andy Collett and first responder James O'Neill, who used a defibrillator on Andy saving his life moments after CPR had already been done by Ali

After 12 months of treatment and rehabilitation, including the fitting of an internal defibrillator Andy and a group of friends completed a 100-mile cycle ride fundraiser.

He raised enough money to buy a defibrillator for the site at Kineton Playgroup, a nursery and childcare facility, and Kineton Primary School.

Andy said: “The amazing thing about it is I was able to double our target and get one for Wellesbourne (primary) too.”

Defibrillator at Kineton Playgroup next to Kineton Primary School

Officials at the playgroup held a plaque unveiling ceremony after the new defibrillator had been installed outside of childcare facility's building.

Carol Hooper, the manager at Kineton Playgroup, said: “We are here to celebrate Andy and Ali and their fantastic achievement.”

Sir Graham Meldrum, the chair of the West Midlands Ambulance Trust, who attended the unveiling ceremony, said: “That bit of kit is a miracle. There's no doubt they save lives.”

Andy said: “On June 19, 2017, my heart stopped. My wife, Ali, and my best friend did CPR until the Kineton first responder arrived with a defibrillator to jump start my heart and saved my life. I was very lucky and because of the actions from everyone I am here today.

“I now have my own in-built defibrillator so if my heart stops working again it should get me going. Ali works at Kineton Playgroup and I decided to try to raise enough money to pay for a defibrillator for the Kineton Playgroup/ Kineton Primary School site.”

James O'Neill, the Kineton based first responder who works with the Ettington Community First Responders, stressed the importance of CPR and defibrillator training for the general public.

He added: “We rarely see CPR when we're called to a cardiac arrest.”

James provided the training for the staff at playgroup and Kineton Primary School to use the defibrillator. The new defibrillator at playgroup is designed with another option specifically for children with a lower energy shock.

He said: “A lot of it was down to Ali and Mark (Andy's best friend) doing CPR on the night. The CPR was really good, and then Andy had three shocks (from a defibrillator).”

Ali said: “As a staff we're all trained in first aid (CPR) and now we're defibrillator trained too.”