Health: Calderdale man who saved wife's life after heart attack makes CPR plea

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A Hipperholme man who had to use CPR to save his wife’s life is urging people to learn the vital skill.

Thanks to instructions over the phone from a 999 call-handler, Adam D’Arcy managed to help Sharon when she suffered a heart attack at their home.

Now he is backing a British Heart Foundation call for more people to learn CPR.

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He was making lunch when Sharon collapsed in January last year.

Adam D'Arcy and his wife SharonAdam D'Arcy and his wife Sharon
Adam D'Arcy and his wife Sharon

“I was standing right by her so I caught her and we fell to the ground together – her whole body was shaking and she wasn’t breathing properly,” he recalled.

Adam rang 999 and an emergency call handler advised Sharon needed CPR until the ambulance arrived.

“I’d never had any CPR training but they told me what to do,” he said.

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Adam performed CPR for just over a minute until the ambulance arrived and paramedics took over. Sharon was then taken to Calderdale Royal Hospital, where doctors told Adam he had saved her life.

He says they now plan to sign up to a CPR course with his 10-year-old son Harvey and Sharon’s 11-year-old son Oliver.

“My experience has made me realise the importance of CPR training,” said Adam. “We’re going to sign the boys up and do a course as a family”.

The British Heart Foundation is urging people to learn CPR for free in just 15 minutes using its online tool - RevivR.

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It teaches people how to recognise a cardiac arrest, gives feedback on chest compressions and outlines the correct steps of using a defibrillator.

Dr Charmaine Griffiths, Chief Executive of the British Heart Foundation, said: “Every second counts when someone has a cardiac arrest and knowing CPR could be the difference between life and death.

"A cardiac arrest can happen to anyone at any time - it could be your partner, your mum or dad or your child.

“Our survey shows that too many of us still haven’t learned CPR and wouldn’t have the confidence to step in if the worst should happen.”

For more information about how to learn CPR visit the British Heart Foundation’s website at