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Man whose wife's CPR training gave him 'a chance to be resuscitated' backs Learn to be a Lifesaver campaign

PUBLISHED: 05:31 15 February 2019 | UPDATED: 08:45 15 February 2019

Andy Read, who collapsed with a cardiac arrest at his home in Sudbury in August, is backing our Learn to be a Lifesaver campaign. Picture: ANDY READ

Andy Read, who collapsed with a cardiac arrest at his home in Sudbury in August, is backing our Learn to be a Lifesaver campaign. Picture: ANDY READ

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A Sudbury man whose life was saved thanks to his wife's knowledge of CPR has welcomed news of our new campaign to increase the number of people in Suffolk trained in the life-saving skills.

Lesley Dolphin and Nigel Donkin  (British Heart  Foundation) launching the new CPR Campaign   Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNLesley Dolphin and Nigel Donkin (British Heart Foundation) launching the new CPR Campaign Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Yesterday we launched the Learn to be a Lifesaver campaign alongside BBC Radio Suffolk, offering free CPR and defibrillator training sessions at six venues across the county.

Those taking part will learn CPR, as well as how to use a defibrillator.

Andy Read, 59, from Sudbury, says he is delighted more people are set to learn CPR after suffering a cardiac arrest at his home in August last year.

Mr Read, who plays football three times a week, had arrived home after a walk around Sudbury when he collapsed in the kitchen.

“My wife Sharon was making breakfast and I collapsed - and can’t remember anything for three weeks after,” he said.

“What I have been told is that Sharon put me in the recovery position while she called 999.

“The NHS and emergency services were absolutely superb.

“When the first responder came round, Sharon was still on the phone making the 999 call.”

Mr Read was shocked by a defibrillator three times as the East Anglian Air Ambulance flew a doctor to the scene.

He was stabilised for an hour and a half before being rushed to Basildon Hospital.

He had a stent and a balloon fitted to his heart and was kept in an induced coma for three and a half weeks.

Mr Read said: “Sharon used to train people in CPR 30 years ago.
“She stabilised me by putting me in the recovery position and making sure I had a clear airway.

“She gave me a chance to be resuscitated by the first responder.”

Mr Read, who works as head of safety at Places Leisure, said it is vitally important that people have the confidence to step in and help when someone suffers a cardiac arrest.

He said 10 years ago, Places Leisure become the first organisation to fit defibrillators in all its centres.

“The crux of it is not just about getting defibrillator out there - people need to have the confidence to use them,” he said.

To book your place on one of our CPR and defibrillator training sessions, email here.

Andy is currently raising money for the East Anglian Air Ambulance. See here for details.

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