DEFIBRILLATORS are to be installed in every NHS dental practice in Scotland.
The machines will be purchased through a national £1 million procurement contract by the Scottish Government. Plans call for the new defibrillators to be in place by the end of August. Practitioners who have already purchased a unit will be compensated.
The local public will be informed of the new defibrillators through a range of measures, including displays in dental practice windows. The machines will also be mapped on to the Scottish Ambulance Service control system to enable ambulance call handlers to direct the public to the practice while an ambulance is on its way.
Scottish Minister for Public Health Michael Matheson said: "Every second counts when someone's heart goes into cardiac arrest and having access to a defibrillator can mean the difference between life and death.
"As these machines are becoming easier to use it is only right that the public have more access to its life-saving potential in any public places.
"There are almost 1000 NHS dental practices in the centre of Scottish communities. By giving them this equipment we are providing 1000 more chances to save a life.
"I believe that this investment will save many more lives."
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