IT is a sobering fact that last year more than 6500 Victorians suffered a cardiac arrest with more than three-quarters of all patients being at home when the onset of symptoms turned into a health emergency.
For many farmers, home is where we work and we can be kilometres or hours away from the nearest hospital or medical centre.
We all know our paramedics do a fantastic job but they can't be everywhere all the time.
When the worst happens, it really is the matter or life and death to be able to have access to devices such as defibrillators to help buy patients much needed time before the paramedics arrive.
]As every minute passes without CPR or a defibrillator, the patient's chances of survival, or minimising the damage, is greatly reduced.
This is one of the driving factors behind why the VFF is proud to have partnered with St John Ambulance to distribute seven lifesaving defibrillators to remote farming communities across Victoria.
In the coming weeks, areas such as Barwite, Fish Creek and Derrinallum here in Victoria will be given access to a device for use by the community whenever it is needed.
In the town of Fish Creek for example, more than a quarter of its residents are aged 65 and over and we know that is a risk factor for suffering cardiac arrest.
When we think safety on farms, many of us naturally think about hazards to avoid and checklists to avoid injury.
As important as this is, safety also means looking after our health and planning for the worst should someone suffer an episode such as cardiac arrest.
Of course we all hope these devices never need to be used, however they can make all the difference when the unthinkable becomes a reality.