FIRST Coleraine Presbyterian Church in Abbey Street has installed a defibrillator that can be used in the event of a medical emergency on the premises or by members of the public in the general vicinity of the church.
The equipment is located in a bright yellow box on an outside wall at the front of the Abbey Street church in full view of passers-by.
Several church members, including organisation leaders, are to receive training so that the equipment can be effectively utilised if required when the church is open for business.
But it is worth emphasising that the equipment can be accessed by ANY member of the public who feels that it would help in a medical emergency.
The yellow box has a number keypad. To access the equipment, one should ring 999, the usual emergency services number and ask for the Ambulance Service.
The ambulance operator will ask for the location of the caller and match this to the correct keypad access code for the equipment to be removed from the box.
The equipment can be used by any member of the public, even those without any medical training. By remaining on the phone with the caller the ambulance operator will give full guidance on its use so there is no need to worry that it might be wrongly applied.
At a recent meeting of the Church Committee, the need for a defibrillator was first raised by local GP, Dr. Roger Stevenson and there was unanimous agreement that the equipment should be purchased and installed.
Reverend James Hyndman, minister of First Coleraine, thanked the committee for their commitment to this and is delighted to make this important medical equipment available for members of the Coleraine public and those living or working near the church in Abbey Street who may need it.