As a person’s best chance of survival in the case of SCA is to receive a defibrillator shock within five minutes of collapse with chances of survival reducing by 10 percent every minute, access to an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) is central to saving lives. And therefore, the preceding Back to Rhythm activities saw the Philips Foundation contribute seventeen (17) Philips HeartStart AEDs to the Kenya Red Cross - all through public participation; these AEDs have been placed in ambulances that are strategically located throughout Nairobi, Narok and Meru.
The first phase of the campaign challenged the public in Nairobi to take up the #10MinHeartChallenge, while the second phase encompassed a long-distance cycling challenge called Tour de Meru. A big-hearted group of Nairobi residents cycled from Nairobi to Meru – a total distance of 271.49 kms – with celebrity host, and Meru native, MC Jesse leading the peloton.
MC Jesse spearheaded and completed the bike ride, and in return the Philips Foundation contributed three (3) AEDs to the Meru Red Cross and one (1) AED to the Igoji Mission Hospital in Meru. In addition to giving the people of Meru access to AED’s, the cyclists made pit stops along the route to Meru where the Philips and Red Cross teams jointly provided community education programs on Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation and AED resuscitation.
Now, for its third phase, the collaboration will extend the campaign to Eldoret – home to Kenya’s marathon athletes’ training ground. For the first time the collaboration will extend its focus beyond the general public, that are commonly believed to suffer from non-communicable diseases (NCD), to also shine the spotlight on heart health for Kenya’s endurance athletes – a group that puts their hearts under a completely different kind of strain.