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Public Defibrillators Save Lives

by Tony Myers on 06/19/14


In recent years, there have been a growing number of advocates in the United States, Canada, and England for the so-called public defibrillators, or automated external defibrillators (AEDs) placed in public locations such as: subways, airports, airplanes, schools, gyms and fitness centers, health clubs, day care centers, restaurants, hotels, public swimming pools, government offices, casinos, amusement parks, etc.

Why go public?

These advocates, which include among their ranks associations of physicians and public health officials, cite studies which show that majority of all deaths caused by sudden cardiac arrests (SCAs) occur in the period right after the SCA but before the victims are bought to the hospital. In fact, each minute spent waiting for emergency personnel without performing any first aid on a victim decreases the chances of the latter surviving by 10%.

How public is public?

Many countries now have legislation mandating the placement of automated external defibrillators (AEDs) in public places, or other public programs or initiatives which contribute towards the same goal. Many provinces in Canada, led by the province of Manitoba, have public defibrillator laws. A combination of public and private initiatives in England has led to the placement of AEDs in many locations.

In the U.S, 16 states have legislation either encouraging or mandating the public placement of AEDs. Many states have also passed ‘Good Samaritan’ laws, or legislation which protect those who use AEDs on victims, without being professional medical personnel, from criminal and/or civil liability. Many public defibrillator advocates see the fear of liability as a factor that discourages non-medical personnel from helping others through the use of an AED.

A perfect fit for public use

The Philips HeartStart FR2 Defibrillator is the perfect AED for use in public placement programs and initiatives.

As an AED, it automatically diagnoses an SCA victim’s condition within seconds to determine what kind of treatment should be given. Users do not have to adjust the shock given to patients. It also automatically runs diagnostics on its own on a regular basis to ensure that it won’t fail or breakdown when it is needed.

The HeartStart FR2 is powered by the standard Philips M3863A FR2 battery. Among its accessories are the standard FR2 pads, and FR2 pads for use on children and infants. 

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