Generalize the installation of defibrillators in public places in Mons? The majority say no but museums will soon be equipped with it

2024-03-30 11:02:00

“Around 10,000 Belgians suffer from cardiac arrest each year, an average of 27 cases per day, including 15 to 30% in public spaces”underlines the municipal councilor in his motion, adding that only 10% of these cases are not punctuated by a death. “The chances of survival decrease by approximately 10% per minute in the absence of immediate resuscitation. However, in Belgium, emergency services take on average eight minutes to arrive on site.”

Train in first aid procedures

In short, to increase the chances of survival, we must act quickly, very quickly. “Intervention with an automated external defibrillator (AED) within the first three minutes can increase the survival rate by up to 75%. The use of this device, in conjunction with calling emergency services, recognizing the problem, and cardiopulmonary resuscitation, constitutes one of the essential actions that can save a life.”

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For the advisor, there is no reason to procrastinate: the installation of defibrillators in public places, for example village squares, the Grand-Place, the herb market is essential. “Even if cases of heart attacks on public roads seem to remain minimal in Mons, it is an important act of prevention in my opinion.” And to add: “Through such an initiative, we are showing solidarity. Perhaps we will never need to use such a device on the street, but if this were to happen, it will offer the victim more chances of survival. It is also the responsibility of public authorities to put in place measures to protect the health of our fellow citizens.”

20,000 euros freed up to continue their installation

Of course, just installing these devices is not enough. “To go further in the process, we must also raise awareness among citizens about prevention and first aid training, starting with our administrations.” An opinion that the Mons majority (PS-Ecolo) generally supported. “The importance of deploying defibrillators usable by non-professionals is no longer in doubt”, estimates Nicolas Martin (PS), mayor.

”As the law requires, our sports infrastructures already have them, but their use is accompanied by strict rules and in the interest of the population, it is not advisable to generalize their installation in public spaces. Apart from sports clubs, they are today installed in busy places but too isolated to guarantee rapid intervention by the emergency services.”

In this logic, the Calva rooms, the town hall, the Grand-Place car park, the municipal administration and even Mons Arena already have them. “A reflection is still evolving: a budget of 20,000 euros is planned to equip museums during this year.” For the rest, the city specifies that the Monsport non-profit organization organizes training twice a year for sports clubs and that internally at the city level, staff have already been trained.

At the suggestion of Mathieu Veltri, the exact locations of installation of the devices should be communicated via MonsMag.

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