Under the program Boambee Soccer Club Inc, the Leagues Club and the Coffs Harbour Rifle Club all received NSW Government funding to purchase an Automated External Defibrillator.
Under the program Boambee Soccer Club Inc, the Leagues Club and the Coffs Harbour Rifle Club all received NSW Government funding to purchase an Automated External Defibrillator. Tyson Yates

OPINION: This is why we should have defibs in schools

IF NOT for the ready availability of a defibrillator, my dad would not be with us today.

That is why I applaud the LNP's commitment to installing one of the devices in every school in Queensland if they are elected next year.

My dad died twice on January 23, 2015.

But two council lifeguards were on the scene, armed with a defibrillator, and they brought him back.

Mum and dad were on their annual holiday in Wooloolga, a small town north of Coffs Harbour, when dad collapsed.

Bystanders had started CPR and a quick-thinking child, who we will forever be indebted to, ran to a nearby beach where the lifesavers were working.

Daley Bear and Craig Freeman were on the beach that day and were the difference between life and death for my dad.

Emergencies can happen any time, anywhere.

They can happen to people young and old.

My dad was in his mid-50s when he suffered what could have been a life-ending cardiac arrest.

Last month footage of a fit young woman when viral after she suffered a heart attack at her gym.

Fortunately, they had a defibrillator on hand and they were able to revive her.

The importance of these machines can't be downplayed.

When I spoke to Greg Hackfath, the Coffs Harbour City Council Lifeguard Service Team Leader, after my father's collapse, he told me only about 5% of people who went into cardiac arrest outside of a hospital survived with just CPR.

As Opposition health spokeswoman Ros Bates said, sudden cardiac arrests can happen any time to people of any age and fitness level and it would cost about $2.6 million to put one in every school in the state.

I think that is a worthwhile investment that could definitely save lives.

As for my dad, he's one hundred percent better four years after his health scare.

And happily his doctors installed an internal defibrillator in his chest, which means he now has one wherever he goes.