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Mrs. Brown’s Boys and FAI Heart Care Programme
Mrs. Brown’s Boys and the Football Association of Ireland have announced the latest phase of their innovative Heart Care programme as it enters its second year in operation, helping to protect children and adolescents from Sudden Cardiac Death.
The six-year programme, sponsored by Mrs. Brown’s Boys and endorsed by stars Brendan O’Carroll and his wife Jenny, kicked off last January and already over 1600 boys and girls have been screened in the National Leagues.
Mrs. Brown’s Boys have committed €430,000 over six years to the programme which has been developed under the guidance of FAI Medical Director, Dr Alan Byrne.
The Heart Care Programme has already referred 85 young footballers for cardiology assessment and treatment, 50 of these referrals were based on ECG results, 30 on physical examination and/or symptoms and 5 on family history.
At a Press Conference at the FAI’s Headquarters at Abbotstown on Monday, details were also announced for a programme to introduce basic life support training nationwide for grassroots volunteers in 2020 with the first training courses conducted by Heartsafety Solutions scheduled for February. This training is Irish Heart Foundation certified and will cover CPR and the use of an Automated External Defibrillator (AED).
As part of the programme, Heartsafety Solutions will donate two defibrillators for a raffle open to all participants who attend for CPR/AED training next year. Clubs can also get the health of their defibrillator units checked at the course venues with discounts available for the purchase of new Automatic External Defibrillators.
Speaking at the media briefing, Mrs. Brown’s Boys creator Brendan O’Carroll and his wife Jenny said: “We at Mrs. Brown’s Boys have been delighted with the success of the Heart Care Programme in year one and we look forward to the expansion of this programme in 2020 and the introduction of Basic Life Support training in grassroots football.
Heartsafety Solutions Managing Director David Greville said: “For every minute that CPR and Defibrillation is delayed following a sudden cardiac arrest, the chance of survival is reduced by 10%. Therefore, equipping clubs and coaches with the skills and equipment required will definitely save lives in the future.”