Anne Holland is an entrepreneur, educator, presenter, speaker and author.
She founded her business Defib First in 2012 and not-for-profit and registered charity Urban Lifesavers in 2015.
She is a passionate advocate of education to raise community awareness of the lifesaving role of automated external defibrillators (AEDs), by removing fear and empowering others to take immediate action to potentially save a life.
Anne is a registered nurse with extensive experience in post anaesthetic critical care, a first aid trainer and nurse immuniser who brings her combination of specialised professional and personal experience to her commitment for change with passion and determination.
She is an experienced and accomplished speaker on the subject of optimising community and workplace safety by improving survival for victims of sudden cardiac arrest with the application of AEDs by laypersons.
Anne’s passion for educating ordinary people to become urban lifesavers stems from the sudden cardiac arrest death of her husband, Paul – a father of five.
Out of this passion, her business Defib First was established and is focused on education and awareness so that ordinary people can take the extraordinary action to save the life of someone suffering a sudden cardiac arrest by applying an automated external defibrillator (AED) without fear or hesitation.
Anne teaches laypersons, regardless of whether they have prior first aid training, on why, when and how to apply an AED.
Sudden cardiac arrest is the leading cause of death surpassing all cancers and road fatalities combined.
It is the one cause of death where the victim’s survival depends on the actions of the people around them.
The problem is there are too few AEDs in the workplace and community and too few people who have the knowledge and confidence to use them.
Minutes matter in a sudden cardiac arrest and early CPR with defibrillation is the key to saving lives.
Anne’s vision is to see AEDs included as key components of emergency First Aid equipment available in all public spaces and workplaces across Australia.
She has a particular interest in promoting workplace safety and duty of care.
It is now compulsory in Australia to be assessed as competent in the use of an AED when completing first aid training.
It is not however compulsory that workplaces actually provide the lifesaving device which would enable their staff to perform that skill.
In addition, it is 560 times more likely that a cardiac arrest will occur compared with a death caused by fire or smoke, however, fire extinguishers are compulsory but AEDs are not.
The ultimate aim is to have accessibility of AEDs as commonplace as fire extinguishers.