Tesco becomes first supermarket in Scotland to join defibrillator network that could save lives

Tesco has become the first supermarket in Scotland to begin registering all its defibrillators to a new national database that could improve cardiac arrest survival rates across the country.

By Callum Lewis
Friday, 10th June 2022, 4:55 am

The database, called The Circuit, aims to map all defibrillators in locations such as supermarkets, train stations and offices, allowing ambulance services to direct bystanders to the nearest registered defibrillator in an emergency.

It is also pioneering a sophisticated national database that synchronises every 60 seconds with the live dispatch systems of the UK’s ambulance services. This allows ambulance services to direct bystanders to the closest defibrillator in an emergency.

With 167 defibrillators in Tesco stores across Scotland registered and more than 2,000 others across the UK, it is the biggest single addition of defibrillators to the database so far.

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A defibrillator can mean the difference between life and death for someone suffering cardiac arrest

Every year in the UK there are more than 30,000 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests, survived by fewer than one in ten people .

Dr Charmaine Griffiths, Chief Executive of the British Heart Foundation said: “We’re thrilled that Tesco are registering all their defibrillators on The Circuit – this could help save lives in the years to come. By ensuring defibrillators are visible to ambulance services in the ultimate medical emergency, Tesco is providing an invaluable service to communities across the UK.”

To ensure The Circuit achieves its ambitions, the founding health charities are urging all organisations with defibrillators to register them on the system. There are tens of thousands of defibrillators in locations unknown to the ambulance services, and the BHF has set a goal of seeing 70,000 new defibrillators registered before the end of the year.