By Rebecca Stewart | Trends Editor

October 18, 2016 | 4 min read

Most people use Twitter's heart-shaped 'like' button on a regular basis without giving it a second thought, but now the British Heart Foundation (BHF) has put the icon to use for its latest campaign.

To mark Restart A Heart Day which aims to raise awareness of CPR and how it can be used to save a life, the charity is making use of Twitter's autoreply function.

At the centre of the bespoke campaign is a special tweet from the official BHF account which asks users to imagine experiencing a cardiac arrest and click the like button to see what happens next.

Based on the figure that less than one in ten people survive a cardiac arrest over 90% of those taking part will be tweeted a response telling them that they're unlucky which contains further detail on why they didn't pull through.

The message links readers through to a video which explains that thousands of people die each year because people are not carrying out life saving CPR on cardiac arrest victims before emergency services arrive.

Chances of survival for cardiac arrest patients are almost zero if they collapse and receive no bystander CPR until emergency services arrive.

Restart a Heart Day coincides with the largest ever CPR training event of its kind where more than 100,000 people will be taught CPR in schools and community groups across the whole of the UK. This comes as part of collaboration between the Resuscitation Council (UK), BHF, St John Ambulance, British Red Cross, Yorkshire Ambulance Service (YAS), and the UK NHS ambulance services and fire and rescue services across the country.

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All the partner organisations want to create a Nation of Lifesavers and say that more people need to be educated and trained in life saving CPR to help improve the low cardiac arrest survival rates in the UK.

Simon Gillespie, chief executive of the BHF, said: “Shockingly, thousands of lives are being lost every year because people lack the confidence and skills to step in and save a life when someone collapses with a cardiac arrest.

“Survival rates in the UK have remained stubbornly low for far too long and it’s time we improved them.

“We need as many people as possible to learn this life-saving skill to give them the confidence to step in and try to save a life when they see someone suffer a cardiac arrest.

“That’s why we are urging secondary schools across the UK to apply for our free training kits and help create a Nation of Lifesavers.”

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