All of the 41 football clubs that form the Northern Ireland Football League are to be provided with life-saving defibrillators ahead of the new season.

Following the distressing events at Euro 2020 in Denmark, a risk assessment by the NIFL Board outlined a desire to protect clubs and to potentially help save the life of someone experiencing a sudden cardiac arrest.

As a result, new defibrillators will be provided to 41 clubs including all those in the Premiership, Championship, Premier Intermediate League and Women’s Premiership.

“The role of the NI Football League is not just to govern but to serve and protect our membership,” said Chair Gerard Lawlor.

“This is an important service that we can offer to our clubs to protect players, supporters and staff.”

“Everyone in football got a real shock at the events in Denmark a few weeks ago, so if this project saves one life over a period of time, we simply can’t put a value on that.”

The move was welcomed by Sinn F¯éin MLA and Sports, Arts and Culture spokesperson Sinéad Ennis.

“On average, 1,400 people a year in the North suffer cardiac arrest outside of a hospital setting.”

“And for every minute CPR is not performed on the victim, survival chances decrease by 10%.”

“This move will ensure that players and supporters alike will have a bit more medical protection inside the stadiums.”

“It is vital that lifesaving defibrillators are in as many locations as possible, including schools, sports clubs and community facilities and that as many people across our society are educated in how to perform CPR and use a defibrillator.”

 

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