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What is an AED?
If you’ve visited a public building or office, you may have noticed automated external defibrillators (AEDs) on display. You may be curious about why they’re so prevalent. AEDs are small, computerized devices that analyze heart rhythms and provide defibrillation, or an electrical shock to help re-establish an effective rhythm for people experiencing sudden cardiac arrest. A processor inside the AED analyzes the heart rhythm through electrodes placed on the patient’s chest. The machine will only shock when necessary and is designed to shock only when ventricular fibrillation (VF), a common cause of cardiac arrest, is detected.
How do I stay in compliance?
To be in compliance with this standard, first aid kits must contain the required products and meet all other applicable requirements in their entirety. This standard anticipates that additional first aid products will be included to augment the kit, based on the specific hazards existing in a particular environment
How does an AED it work?
An integrated computer with adhesive electrodes checks the heart rhythm of a person in distress. Based on the assessment, the computer determines if defibrillation is necessary. In case it is required, the user receives a prompt from a recorded voice to press the shock button on the AED. The shock delivered momentarily stops the heart’s activity, allowing it to restart effectively. The user is guided audibly throughout the process. It’s important to note that AEDs recommend defibrillation only for life-threatening conditions like ventricular fibrillation or pulseless ventricular tachycardia.
Who can use an AED?
AEDs are designed to be used by anyone, providing simple visual or audio commands. They can be used by non-medical personnel, such as firefighters, police officers, lifeguards, flight attendants, security guards, teachers, and family members of high-risk individuals. Having an AED on hand can save the life of someone experiencing cardiac arrest, which is why they are increasingly found in public places. In addition, anyone can purchase an AED for personal use at home, work, school, or anywhere it may be needed.
For individuals with a high risk of cardiac arrest, owning an AED can offer peace of mind and potentially save their life. Laws and regulations in each state require that public gathering places have AEDs available to prevent sudden cardiac death or neurological damage resulting from cardiac arrest.
Where should the AED be placed?
Automated external defibrillators (AEDs) are essential devices that should be available in various locations to ensure a quick response in case of sudden cardiac arrest (SCA). These devices should be placed in high-traffic areas, including sports arenas, airports, hotels, schools, and shopping malls, to name a few. Additionally, they should be installed in any other public or private place where there is a high risk of heart attacks or where large numbers of people gather. AEDs are also recommended to be placed near elevators, cafeterias, main reception areas, and on walls in main corridors to ensure easy accessibility. In addition to first-response vehicles such as ambulances, law enforcement vehicles, and fire engines, public accessibility to AEDs is crucial for the timely and effective treatment of SCA.