St John Ambulance’s newly-appointed ACT Chief Executive Officer, Adrian Watts, is calling for the provision of life-saving defibrillators in all ACT Government properties, including schools.
“Too many Canberrans suffer a sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) every day and easy access to a defibrillator could save close to 100 lives a year in the ACT. I want to see Canberra adopt a nation-leading approach where defibrillators are readily accessible and the majority of the population has been educated in CPR. We live in a great country and one of the world’s healthiest communities here in Canberra, but we let ourselves down in one simple but important area of community health. While Australia has a nine per cent survival rate from SCA, we know that this survival rate can be rapidly increased with the installation of accessible defibrillators right across the city.”
St John Ambulance ACT is calling for defibrillators to be provided in all government buildings, depots and Canberra’s 150 schools over the next four-year term of the Legislative Assembly. At present, there is no requirement for ACT Government properties to have defibrillators.
As Adrian says
“Canberra has always been a leader in community and public health policy, and spread over four years, this would see us continue to put the lives of our citizens and visitors first. Every year, there are 25,000 deaths due to SCA in Australia. If we had greater access to defibs it’s estimated around 12,000 lives a year could be saved. That’s well over 100 every year in Canberra alone.”
Mr Watts joins St John Ambulance after 12 years of leadership roles in Canberra’s health and community sectors, including four years as CEO and Managing Director of the National Health Co-op.
“I’ve always been passionate about healthcare and Canberra and I’m excited to be taking the reins of an incredible organisation which is 100 per cent focused on the health and wellbeing of every Canberran”
St John Ambulance ACT Chair, Bill Bunton, has welcomed Mr Watts’ appointment to lead the hard-working team in Canberra.
‘We’re excited to have someone with Adrian’s experience and enthusiasm on-board and look forward to working closely with him as we transition from the challenges of COVID into a new phase and era for the organisation.” Mr Bunton said.