The government has confirmed today (25 July 2023) that all state-funded schools in England now have a life-saving defibrillator, drastically increasing the chances of surviving cardiac arrest for all state school pupils in England.
Following the government’s £19 million rollout, over 20,000 defibrillators have successfully been delivered to almost 18,000 schools since January.
In June, the Department for Education oversaw the successful completion of deliveries of defibrillators to secondary schools. Now, all eligible primary, special and alternative provision schools who did not already have a defibrillator have received deliveries, boosting their numbers in communities across the country.
In July 2022, the government committed to delivering these devices before the end of the 2022 to 2023 academic year to ensure that all state funded schools in England had access to a defibrillator, following the campaigning from Mark King of the Oliver King Foundation to ensure all schools have a defibrillator. Mark tragically lost his son, Oliver, after he suffered sudden cardiac arrest at school during a swimming lesson when he was 12-years-old.
Secretary of State for Education Gillian Keegan said:
Having access to defibrillators in schools drastically increases the chance of pupils, teachers and visitors surviving a cardiac arrest.
Thanks to the tireless campaigning of Mark King, Jamie Carragher and Nicola Carragher we are proud to say that every state-funded school in England now has access to a defibrillator.
Teachers and pupils across the country can now be reassured that they will have access to one on school grounds should tragedy strikes.