The Premier League announced on Friday that it will fund a donation of defibrillators to 2,000 UK youth clubs, with the aim of improving relief conditions in cases of sudden illness. The league will partner with the FA and The Football Foundation, an organization that promotes sport in communities and neighborhoods across England.
Donations will be divided into two phases. Initially, the defibrillators will be sent to facilities funded by the Football Foundation for which the device is not yet available. After that, primary clubs that do not count the device will also be able to request a donation.
- After cardiac arrest in the field, Christian Eriksen was discharged from hospital in Copenhagen
The goal is to assist more than 2,000 facilities across the country, with at least half of the equipment delivered before the start of the 2021/22 season. The Premier League claims that defibrillators can help environments of up to 1.5 million people. Each site will have a person available to take an online course on how to use the equipment.
We hope that by allowing more utilities to own a device, it will make a difference in saving someone’s life. Premier League chief executive Richard Masters said the shocking incident we all witnessed when Christian Eriksen collapsed during Euro 2020 highlights the need for defibrillators to be more widely available in the football community.
The case of Eriksen, who suffered a heart attack in the first round of the European Cup group stage, captured the world’s attention. The player lost consciousness at the end of the first half of the match against Finland and had to perform a resuscitation maneuver. After that, the doctors reported that the player’s heart suddenly stopped and “broken”. However, prompt care, using a portable defibrillator, was necessary for him to leave the field already awake and spend less than a week in the hospital.
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Eriksen checked into hospital in Copenhagen, in a post published in the midst of his hospitalization – Image: Reproduction/Instagram
Faced with the drama of the ex-Tottenham player, the Premier League has decided to set up a fund called the Premier League Defibrillator Fund, which adds £100m to the league’s investment over the course of the season in grassroots football and community facilities across England.
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According to the Premier League statement, at least 12 young people between the ages of 12 and 35 die of heart problems in the UK every week.
In light of the recent incident with Christian Eriksen, I cannot confirm that defibrillators can be of value in saving someone’s life. British Sports Minister Nigel Huddleston said I am asking clubs to draw on the federation’s background and training, and to give players confidence that their health and well-being are a top priority.
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