The Federal Government announced this morning that $1 million has been allocated to subsidise the installation of defibrillators into over 1000 caravan parks across the country.
Caravan Industry Association of Australia CEO Stuart Lamont welcomed the funding as an exciting and yet common-sense initiative that will save the lives of some Australians who suffer a sudden cardiac arrest while caravanning.
Mr Lamont said, “Caravan parks are popular holiday destinations – particularly with senior Australians who are at an increased risk of heart attack.”
“We also know that in rural and regional areas it can take longer for an ambulance to arrive, given the distances they sometimes have to travel. This program will ensure that if a person suffers a heart attack in a caravan park that lifesaving help is close to hand”
“Anything we can do to make sure that Australians going away caravanning return home safely to their loved ones is a great thing,” Mr Lamont said.
Minister for Health, the Hon Greg Hunt MP in making the announcement this morning at BIG4 Mornington Peninsula Holiday Park said heading off on that caravan and camping trip to regional Australia has just become that much safer.
“Research shows that if a person is defibrillated within the first five minutes of collapse, their chance of survival is around 90 per cent,” Minister Hunt said.
“For every minute that this is delayed, the chances of survival decrease by up to 10 per cent.”
“This initiative will save and protect lives,” Minister Hunt said.
Caravan Industry Association of Australia will manage the implementation of the program with caravan parks contributing half the cost of each defibrillator up to $1,000 per unit, and will work to ensure a speedy roll-out of the program.
Funds are available from this financial year, with State caravanning associations expected to be heavily involved in encouraging their members to take up the offer. An initial expression of interest form is being developed and will be forwarded in the coming weeks to capture caravan parks looking to take advantage of this exciting initiative.
Caravan Industry Association of Australia would like to thank Senator Bridget McKenzie (Minister for Regional Services) and Minister Greg Hunt for their support of the caravanning community, and recognising the importance of protecting the lives of the 11 million Australians who undergo a caravanning or camping holiday adventure annually.