Patrick Fisher, founder and CEO of Urban Innovation Company, last month launched Pulse Smart Hubs, which boast a range of life-saving and life-enhancing tech, in Belfast City Centre with a helping hand from the Lord Mayor of Belfast, Councillor Deirdre Hargey.
One of the star features of the £3M network of smart street furniture are Public Access Defibrillators (PADs) which can be used to save the life of someone having a heart attack.
Yesterday, Fisher’s company in partnership with Belfast City Centre Management ran sessions for City Centre businesses so workers could learn more about basic life support and how to use the defibrillators that are located nearby. All attendees received a Nationally Accredited AED (Automated External Defibrillators) user certificate.
“Although the Public Access Defibrillators can be used without training, we are raising awareness of the ease of use to increase confidence amongst the local community,” said Fisher. “Every single one of the Pulse Smart Hubs we install in the City Centre is equipped with a life-saving Public Access Defibrillator as standard. We are committed to providing accredited training to businesses based in this area on how to use the AEDs as well as administer CPR and basic life support effectively. This will provide local businesses with a comprehensive understanding that will save lives in the event of cardiac arrest.”
Local businesses who attended include: Irish Tour Tickets, Subway, HMV, Argos, Urban Outfitters, Superdrug, and Bernard Campbell & Solicitors.
The Pulse Smart Hub team also collaborated with Northern Ireland Ambulance Service (NIAS) for the project.
Stephanie Leckey, Community Resuscitation Lead, NIAS, said: “”In Northern Ireland in 2018, there were over 1,400 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests, and that’s the situation where a defibrillator is required. The chances of survival are a lot higher, so having Public Access Defibrillators available in every Pulse Smart Hub across the city centre will help to save a life.”
Belfast City Council have granted permission for 25 of the beautifully designed and technologically advanced smart hubs so far – with planning applications pending to make a series of 30 Pulse Smart Hubs throughout the City.
Fifteen of the 25 hubs are now live, with the other 10 being installed and switched on over coming weeks.
Funded entirely by Fisher’s company which designs and builds next generation telecommunication hubs, Belfast is the first place in the UK to benefit from Pulse Smart Hubs.
One of the most important benefits of the Pulse Smart Hub is its ability to help save lives.
They integrate Public Access Defibrillators (PAD) so if someone experiences an ‘out-of-hospital sudden cardiac arrest’ (OHSCA) nearby, the likelihood of survival greatly increases from 9% to 59%. It is fitting that the first Pulse Smart Hub featuring a defibrillator should be installed in Belfast, as the inventor of this life-saving piece of equipment, Professor James Francis Pantridge, known worldwide as the “Father of Emergency Medicine” began his medical career at Belfast’s very own Queen’s University.