University of Hertfordshire

Attitudes to cardiopulmonary resuscitation and defibrillator use: a survey of UK adults in 2017

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


  • Claire Hawkes
  • T.P. Brown
  • S Booth
  • Rachael Fothergill
  • A. Niroshan Siriwardena
  • S Zakaria
  • S Askew
  • Julia Williams
  • Nigel Rees
  • C Ji
  • Gavin Perkins
View graph of relations
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere008267
Pages (from-to)1-18
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of the American Heart Association
Early online date28 Mar 2019
Publication statusPublished - 2 Apr 2019


Background-Bystander cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and public access defibrillator (PAD) use can save the lives of people who experience out-of-hospital cardiac arrest. Little is known about the proportions of UK adults trained, their characteristics and willingness to act if witnessing an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest, or the public’s knowledge regarding where the nearest PAD is located. Methods and Results-An online survey was administered by YouGov to a nonprobabilistic purposive sample of UK adults, achieving 2084 participants, from a panel that was matched to be representative of the population. We used descriptive statistics and multivariate logistic regression modeling for analysis. Almost 52% were women, 61% were aged <55 years, and 19% had witnessed an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest. Proportions ever trained were 57% in chest-compression-only CPR, 59% in CPR, and 19.4% in PAD use. Most with training in any resuscitation technique had trained at work (54.7%). Compared with people not trained, those trained in PAD use said they were more likely to use one (odds ratio: 2.61), and those trained in CPR or chestcompression- only CPR were more likely to perform it (odds ratio: 5.39). Characteristics associated with being trained in any resuscitation technique included youth, female sex, higher social grade, and full-time employment. Conclusions-In the United Kingdom, training makes a difference in people’s willingness to act in the event of a cardiac arrest. Although there is considerable opportunity to increase the proportion of the general population trained in CPR, consideration should be also given to encouraging training in PAD use and targeting training for those who are older or from lower social grades.


© 2019 The Authors. Published on behalf of the American Heart Association, Inc., by Wiley.

ID: 14904673