RCUK Welcomes Scotland’s Out of Hospital Cardiac Arrest Strategy

Resuscitation Council UK (RCUK) warmly welcomes the publication of Scotland’s Out of Hospital Cardiac Arrest Strategy for 2021-2026, which has been published today.

As a partner of the Save a Life for Scotland campaign, RCUK was pleased to contribute to the development of the strategy and strongly supports its aims. We look forward to supporting the implementation of the strategy over the next five years.

The strategy builds on the achievements of the 2015-2020 strategy, which saw 640,000 people in Scotland trained in CPR and all 32 Scottish local authorities commit to teaching cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) in schools.

RCUK was pleased to see the ambitions in the new strategy to develop these achievements across the augmented Chain of Survival. These include greater public recognition of cardiac arrest and willingness to act (calling 999, CPR and defibrillation), hospital care and aftercare.

We support the strategy’s aims, including:

  • equipping an additional 500,000 people in Scotland with CPR skills
  • increasing bystander CPR rates to 85%
  • increasing survival from Out of Hospital Cardiac Arrest (OHCA) to 15%.

In response to the strategy’s publication, Dr James Cant, Chief Executive of Resuscitation Council UK said:

“We know that every year in Scotland over 3000 people have an out of hospital cardiac arrest. Unfortunately, at the moment, only one in 10 of these survive.

“We particularly welcome the emphasis in the strategy on addressing inequalities and deprivation, decision making and communication for appropriate CPR, and aftercare support for survivors, bystanders and responders.

“We agree that further work in these areas is needed. Tackling inequalities and aftercare support for all those affected by OHCA are key priorities for our work moving forward. We hope that the strategy will improve access to training, resuscitation, and support for those that are in greatest need across Scotland.

“This strategy will contribute to increasing survival rates after cardiac arrest and improving quality of life for those that survive. We are committed to work in partnership with the Scottish Government and the Save a Life for Scotland campaign towards achieving the strategy’s aims by 2026.”