Qld Tradie Saved by Defibrillator at Work

The remarkable survival tale of a 42-year-old workshop operator, Dylan Holmes, highlights the profound impact of AEDs and CPR training in Australian workplaces.

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Team photo during onsite group first aid training by My First Aid Course at Swarly Road Construction. (Story not associated with business depicted in the photo)

On a day Mackay 42-year-old, Dylan Holmes, wasn’t scheduled to work, he found himself facing death’s door when his heart unexpectedly stopped at work. It was only due to a timely deployed Automated External Defibrillator (AED) that rewrote Dylan’s fate, pulling him back from the clutches of death.

ABC News reported the dramatic narrative, casting a spotlight on the indispensable role of AEDs in workplaces. 

“The ambulance lady said that if [my work] didn’t have a defibrillator, I wouldn’t be alive now,” Mr Holmes recounted.

His words reverberate the silent yet potent threat cardiac emergencies pose, and the critical difference an AED can make.

The dire circumstance has ignited a campaign by Dylan and his employer Mick Baker to advocate for widespread AED installations across workplaces. 

Their story serves as both a wake-up call and a testimony to the invaluable returns of having AEDs in workplaces, along with staff trained in CPR and defibrillator use.

Echoing this sentiment is Mal Thompson, Managing Director of My First Aid Course Brisbane. 

“We simply must have AEDs in more businesses, and more workers trained in their use,” Thompson said.

His statement underscores a broader call to action, urging workplaces to gear up against cardiac emergencies.

Thompson, a seasoned first aid course facilitator, lays down three cornerstone tenets for businesses aiming for cardiac emergency preparedness. “Firstly, having a defibrillator onsite is crucial. Secondly, clear signage and a clear procedure for retrieving the defibrillator during every serious incident of sudden illness, injury, or collapse is vital. Lastly, enlisting key staff in nationally recognised first aid and CPR training including defibrillator use is the third pillar in this life-saving preparedness blueprint,” he elaborates.

The economics of life-saving also find a mention in Thompson’s narrative. “The cost of a defibrillator averages to about $1 a day over its lifespan, and training is around $60 per staff member annually, which represents a nominal investment against the priceless benefit of saved lives, as well as promoting a culture of safety and value for life,” he elucidates.

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Queensland Ambulance Service (QAS) clinical director Lachlan Parker accentuates the urgency with a stark statistic, “Every minute without defibrillation you basically reduce your mortality by 10 per cent.” 

This is a clarion call for action, resonating with the ethos of My First Aid Course Brisbane, devoted to fostering swift and effective response to cardiac emergencies through comprehensive training.

The incident has spurred a ripple effect of awareness and action across the industry. Mick Baker shared an anecdote of another manager who, upon reflecting on Dylan’s incident, conducted an impromptu AED awareness session for his workforce. The wave of awareness is growing, and it’s a constructive stride towards a safer workplace environment.

The tale of Dylan Holmes is more than just a survivor’s story; it’s a loud echo through the chambers of numerous workplaces, urging them to arm themselves with the knowledge and tools necessary to combat cardiac emergencies.

We stand with Dylan and Mick spread the word, and hope to spread urgency across the workforce of the need for AEDs in workplaces, as well as offering hands-on CPR and AED training to the public and workplace groups in time-efficient formats and affordable pricing.

“A decision to buy an AED today from a reputable provider and get training for key staff in emergency procedures, could literally save a life tomorrow. Delaying this decision however, may have dire consequences,” Thompson concluded. 

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