A hearty new addition to the island

Publish Date : 21 Nov 2022
Rural nurse specialist, Juliana Williams, with one of the defibrillators

Two lifesaving devices are arriving on Aotea / Great Barrier thanks to the Community Heart Care Project.

The Great Barrier Island Community Health Trust is leading the project by bringing two new manual monitor defibrillators to the motu with the help of local board funding.

The devices last around eight to 10 years but as a crucial piece of the island’s heart health, the existing ones were in urgent need of replacement.

Different to the AED defibrillators available to the public for emergency use at about 20 sites around the island, the two manual monitor defibrillators are designed to be used by medical professionals and offer additional functions.

The same as the ones used by St John, they have advanced capabilities and features AEDs do not, allowing the user to find the exact heart issue, and change the settings to treat it appropriately.

“Purchasing the same model used by St John Ambulance helps to provide seamless health care in an emergency on Aotea,” rural nurse specialist and Aotea Health co-owner Leonie Howie says.

One device will be located at Aotea Health Centre in Claris, the other at the Nurses Cottage in Port Fitzroy, enabling doctors and rural nurses to be properly equipped to monitor and help with heart conditions.

The $88,000 cost of the defibrillators has been offset with a $30,000 Aotea / Great Barrier Local Board grant, with other funding sourced from community donations, while money from raised at this month’s Spectacular by Nature Garden Tour will complete the funding.

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