Broadcaster Jacqui Hurley says a new helpline for people affected by sudden cardiac death can offer families supports that were not available when she lost her young cousin.
CRY (Cardiac Risk in the Young) Ireland last week launched an all-island freephone helpline to support people who have lost a loved one to sudden cardiac death (SCD).
On Lunchtime Live this afternoon, sports broadcaster Jacqui Hurley said she lost her 18-year-old cousin to sudden cardiac death in the 90s.
Her husband’s cousin also died from a cardiac arrest at the age of 19.
She said the new phone line is run by people who have also been affected by SCD.
“I think for a lot of families it is that questioning of what happened? How do we get the answers? Why did this happen to us? How does this happen to a perfectly healthy 19-year-old or a twenty-something-year-old … they are so fit and healthy so what happened?” she said.
The CRY Helpline is now OPEN. Up to 80 people under the age of 35 die from sudden cardiac death in Ireland each year. This FREEPHONE line is run by trained volunteers, who can offer support, care & help.
Here's the numbers you need⤵️❤️
ROI 1800 714 080
NI/UK 00 44 8006 40 62 80 pic.twitter.com/t6UTjnUMpo
— Jacqui Hurley (@jacquihurley) November 29, 2021
She said the day Denmark midfielder Christian Eriksen collapsed during Euro 2020 was “one of the hardest days I have ever put down” as a broadcaster.
“Thank God that man survived and thank God he has been able to promote the message that this happens very regularly,” she said.
“Maybe people are unaware of the stats but up to 80 people in Ireland every year die from this
“That is a huge amount of people and for a lot of us, they are walking around and they don’t know they have it.
So, I think incidents like that highlight that this can happen to everybody. If you can, have a chat with your GP just to know that everything is right.
“This isn’t going to happen to everybody, but you definitely don’t want it happening to your family either and anything we can do to help is huge in this.”
CRY Ireland supports people affected by inherited cardiac conditions with free access to cardiac assessments, bereavement counselling and family support programmes.
The helpline is there to support anyone who has lost a loved one is living with a lifestyle change due to a diagnosis.
The line is open from 7pm – 9pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays, 10am to 12pm on Wednesday and 4pm – 6pm n Sundays.
You can call the helpline on 1800 714 080 in the Republic and 00 44 80 0640 6280 in the North.