Little LifeSavers is a charitable organisation born from the drop-in sessions teaching Basic Life Support (BLS) skills including management of choking children/ Child Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) / Adult CPR and the Recovery Position organised by Dr Barbara Stanley (consultant anaesthetist) and delivered by junior doctors in West Sussex during the Junior Doctors Strike Action. It comes from a desire to disseminate widely the vital skill of providing effective CPR to members of the public – especially school children so as to generate a “nation of lifesavers”. One of the children who attended the drop-in CPR session told his school about it and the head teacher made the first request. And so Little LifeSavers was born.
Little LifeSavers was established as a charity in September 2016. During the first six months Little LifeSavers delivered Basic Life Support Skills Training throughout West Sussex. After this word began to spread and Little LifeSavers groups began to be set up across the UK. In May 2017 Little LifeSavers was featured on ITV’s This Morning. Little LifeSavers continues to grow with new groups being established all the time our nation of Little LifeSavers continues to get bigger and the chances of bystander CPR increases.
Out of Hospital Cardiac Arrest (OOHCA) means there can be a long gap between the time the heart stops and the time CPR is started unless a bystander (a member of the public) intervenes. Once the brain has been starved of oxygen for three minutes or longer permanent damage can occur and every minute the heart does not beat the chances of success of CPR attempts reduces. Initiatives in countries such as Denmark have addressed this problem and successful outcomes after OOHCA have subsequently doubled.
Giving young people the confidence and skill to intervene in such an important way is life- saving. Witnessed OOHCA can be given the maximal chance of success if we empower the public to act.
13 year old Christopher Sears died when he had an epileptic seizure on the school bus. He was sat upright in his seat and from the report it appears he stopped breathing and obstructed his airway. None of his fellow pupils (or bus driver) knew how to help him.