A DRUMCHAPEL MSP has welcomed news free life-saving equipment will be provided to 'defibrillator blackspots' by the British Heart Foundation (BHF).

SNP MSP Bill Kidd hopes the new BHF scheme will help the communities which need it most after it was announced 220 free defibrillator packages will be shared amongst areas in Scotland and the UK.

Local areas awarded one of these defibrillators from the Community Defibrillator Fund will be provided with a defibrillator and cabinet, and installation costs will be covered where required.

Communities awarded a defibrillator will also be able to order future replacement parts free of charge when they expire or are used in a rescue.

And Mr Kidd hopes the people of Drumchapel will apply due to it being one of the "worst served" areas in Scotland.

He said: "I’d encourage community groups to get in touch and apply for these life-saving devices.

"Having one nearby can mean the difference between life or death for anyone suffering a cardiac arrest.

"I’m particularly encouraged by the fact that the areas with the greatest need are being prioritised, the fact that those in the most deprived areas have less access to these life-saving devices needs to be addressed.

"Drumchapel, in my constituency of Glasgow Anniesland, is one of the worst served areas in Scotland in terms of distance to a defibrillator and the BHF’s Community Defibrillator Fund will, I hope, go some way to tackling this."

There are over 3100 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests each year in Scotland but less than one in ten people survive.

Every minute without CPR and defibrillation after a cardiac arrest can reduce the chance of survival by up to 10 per cent.

Quick CPR and defibrillation are vital to give someone the best chance of survival – and can more than double the chances of survival in some cases.

David McColgan, Head of BHF Scotland, said: “Every defibrillator has the power to save a life – that’s why I’m thrilled that we’re able to fully fund 220 of these life-saving devices for communities.

 “Every second counts when someone has a cardiac arrest.

"Performing early CPR and having access to a defibrillator gives someone the best chance of survival.

 “There simply aren’t enough defibrillators where they’re needed most, as research has shown that many communities are too far away from their nearest defibrillator.

"These devices make where you live safer, as cardiac arrests can happen to anyone, at any time. More communities will now have access to a defibrillator that can save lives.”

The charity will ensure that each defibrillator will also be registered on The Circuit: the national defibrillator network, so ambulance services can direct bystanders to the defibrillator in the event of a cardiac arrest.

Communities are invited to apply for their free defibrillator on the BHF website here: www.bhf.org.uk/defibfunding.