Premier League to fund defibrillators for over 2,000 grassroots facilities
The Premier League announced a plan Friday to purchase defibrillators for thousands of grassroots clubs and facilities.
Defibrillators are used to save the life of someone experiencing a sudden cardiac arrest.
More than 2,000 sites will benefit, the league notes in a statement, and the first 1,000 automated external defibrillators (AED) units are scheduled for delivery prior to the start of the 2021-22 season.
Friday's announcement comes following Christian Eriksen's collapse at the European Championship. The ex-Tottenham Hotspur star suffered a sudden cardiac arrest on the pitch during Denmark's group-stage opener versus Finland. The Inter Milan midfielder's life was saved when CPR was performed on him before a defibrillator restarted his heart.
"The traumatic incident we all witnessed when Christian Eriksen collapsed during UEFA Euro 2020 brings into sharp focus the need for defibrillators to be more widely available across the football community," said Premier League chief executive Richard Masters.
"Sadly, a sudden cardiac incident could happen anytime, anywhere, and we hope by enabling more facilities to have a device, it will make the difference in saving someone's life," Masters added.
Former Bolton Wanderers midfielder Fabrice Muamba supports the league's initiative. He suffered a cardiac arrest while playing in 2012.
"I know from personal experience the importance of having access to this type of medical equipment and how vital it is for someone’s survival after suffering from sudden cardiac arrest," Muamba said.