EDINBURGH-based retailer Scotmid Co-operative is adding more life-saving defibrillators to its stores.
The scheme, part of a national partnership between the retailer and the Scottish Ambulance Service will see the equipment installed in coming months.
A defibrillator is a life-saving machine that gives a controlled electric shock designed to restart the heart of a victim of cardiac arrest. Use of a defibrillator can increase the chance of survival of heart attack by 50%.
Kirkliston, Prestonpans and Torrance are the latest Scotmid branches to receive the equipment. Staff will be trained both to use the defibrillators and perform resuscitation.
The equipment is also available for public use in the stores’ local areas when needed.
The total number of Scotmid Co-operative, Semichem and Lakes and Dales Co-operative stores with public access defibrillators will be 45 by the time the scheme is complete. The areas receiving the equipment include communities where an ambulance might take longer to reach than other districts, areas with high instances of cardiac arrest and areas of high footfall.
The Scottish Ambulance Service has provided over 400 hours of training to Scotmid staff as part of the project.
Malcolm Brown, head of corporate communications for Scotmid Co-operative, said: “The roll out of this public access defibrillator programme will make a positive contribution to safer and sustainable communities around the country. While we have world class ambulance response times in Scotland, we know that in cardiac cases every second counts and that equipping communities with basic life saving skills and equipment will further improve survival rates.”