Smooth kick start to Restart a Heart campaign

Pedaling to blend their own fresh fruit smoothie is WSLHD Corporate Communications Policy and Strategic Planning manager Nikki Woloszuk and director of nursing and midwifery Kate Hackett. 

The competition was fierce between teams of Westmead Hospital staff who took part in the inaugural cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) challenge as part of the Restart a Heart Day awareness campaign (16 Oct) hosted by the Westmead Hospital Foundation.

The competitors included staff from the emergency department, cardiology, intensive care, simulation, security, transcription, the University of Sydney, dieticians, pharmacy and the Westmead Applied Research Centre who battled it out for glory and the winning bragging rights of the CPR Challenge Cup.

Once the results were in the emergency department was awarded the inaugural CPR Challenge Cup winners and we are all thankful for that result!

Westmead Hospital 2019 CPR Challenge Cup winners – Westmead emergency department registered nurses Vinka Vargus, Tamara Stevens and Donna Robertson.

Restart A Heart Day encourages everyone including relatives, bystanders and not just clinical staff how important correct, effective CPR is for the survival of patients.

It’s also a day to remind people the importance of a healthy heart by exercising regularly, eating well and aware of any risk factors of heart disease.

Westmead Hospital staff taking part in the Restart A Heart Day 2019 CPR Challenge Cup.

Westmead Hospital emergency department staff specialist Dr Kavita Varshney supports this campaign and says the emergency department treats many patients with heart disease and emphasise the importance of a healthy lifestyle.

“Westmead Hospital treats hundreds of people each year who suffer heart attack or heart disease,” Kavita said.

“Sadly not everyone survives and some people would have a better chance of survival if CPR was delivered quickly and efficiently.”

Also, on the day, Westmead Hospital dieticians were on hand to provide details on healthy lifestyle food choices and dietary tips.

Heart health information and blood pressure checks were offered as well as free smoothies with one catch – you had to physically “power” the blender by riding a bike, to mix the smoothie.

Westmead Hospital Womens and Newborn Health operations director Donna Garland and Nursing and Midwifery executive assistant Carol Junker prepare their smoothies.

Westmead Hospital Foundation chief executive officer Joe Conneely said the use of bikes to create smoothies was a fun way to remind people that little changes to your diet and exercise can make a big difference to your heart health.

“Congratulations to the hospital teams who participated in the inaugural CPR challenge and who knows what we will have install for our competitive staff at Westmead Hospital in 2020,” Joe said.

“The emergency department team 2019 CPR Challenge Cup winners consisted of Vinka Vargus, Tamara Stevens, Donna Robertson and Mee Ling.”

If you want to know more or make a donation please contact Westmead Hospital Foundation:

Auburn Hospital staff also took part in Restart a Heart.  Pictured left to right Theatre nurse unit manager Sarah Sisson, head of anaesthetics Alpha Tung, Medical ward clinical nurse educator Clyde Sy and Clinical Practice clinical nurse consultant Asha Baby.

Healthy heart information can be found at: