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When Seconds Matter… How Fast Can You Find an AED?

Cardiac arrest can happen to anyone, anywhere - just ask Bob Harper!

Cardiac arrest can happen to anyone, anywhere and without warning. Last month, the celebrity trainer and TV personality #BobHarper suffered a heart attack and cardiac arrest while working out in his gym. Being a spokesperson for fitness and healthy lifestyles, he is one of the last people one would think would suffer from cardiac arrest! Luckily for him, there were several doctors exercising at his gym that day and were able to administer CPR as well as three shocks from an AED before paramedics were able to arrive. Having an AED at the gym saved Bob Harper's life.

Every second counts...

When a person goes into cardiac arrest, every second matters. But when determining success and increase in survival rates, the implementation of High Quality CPR and the addition of an AED will improve your chance of survival by up to 70%. But if you were in that situation, would you know where to find an AED? Would you know how to use it? How quickly would you be able to find someone who is trained to use the AED?? Every minute it takes to locate an AED decreases an adult's chance of survival by 10%. By familiarizing yourself with this life-saving piece of equipment - both where to find it and how to use it, you are ensuring that you are giving the person experiencing cardiac arrest the best shot at surviving.

What are the requirements for an AED in your state?

In the Unites States today, only 15 states and Washington DC require by law the presence of an AED in businesses. Do you know the requirements of your state? By having an AED in your workplace and receiving the appropriate training, you can ensure the best chance of survival for your colleagues and yourself should someone experience cardiac arrest. Cardiac arrest is defined as the abrupt loss of heart function in a person who may or may not have diagnosed heart disease. The time and mode of death are unexpected. It occurs instantly or shortly after symptoms appear. The moments after cardiac arrest are crucial - the start of CPR and the use of an AED, automated external defibrillator, are the first steps needed towards returning the heart to a normal rhythm and saving a life.

How easy is it to use an AED without formal training?

Though there are many different AED models, they all have one thing in common - they are very user-friendly and walk you through what to do step by step. Once it is turned on, verbal instructions are provided to ensure that the AED is used properly and, if necessary, will provide the shock that is so desperately needed. All AEDs come with pads to deliver the shock and many are packaged with other first aid necessities. The pads come complete with diagrams to show exact placement on the chest. Once the AED is done analyzing the patient and it determines the need for a shock, it continues to advise the user on what steps to take next - including when to resume CPR.

The next time you go into the office, the gym or your favorite restaurant, take a look around. Can you easily spot the AED? If there is no AED, encourage management to look into the purchase of one… the life you save may be your own!

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