Tuesday, March 10, 2009

OKC AHA Board Member Uses and AED to Save a Life

This past Friday while traveling to Denver an AHA board member and OKC physician was called to the aid of a passenger who was suffering a cardiac arrest. She responded by using her medical training and the plane's AED to save the man's life. You can read the full story here.

It's stories like these that remind me why I get out of bed every morning. Right now the AHA is working hard to pass Senate Bill 745 which would provide immunity to anyone who uses an AED in an attempt to save a person's life.

As you may know, AEDs are extremely important because:

  • If an AED is used within three minutes of a sudden cardiac arrest, the victim has an 80 percent chance of survival.
  • Every minute that passes before returning the heart to a normal rhythm after a cardiac arrest causes the chance of survival to fall by 10 percent.
  • Each year, more than 250,000 people suffer cardiac arrest, usually away from a hospital. More than 95 percent of them will die, in many cases because defibrillation occurs too late to reverse the cardiac arrest.
  • The new generations of AED's require minimal training to use. They automatically diagnose the heart rhythm, determine if a shock is needed, and prevent the user from overriding a "no shock" advisory. Their ease of use is increased by an electronic voice to prompt users through each step; all AED's approved for use in the United States use a voice prompt.
Without legislation we fear that individuals will hesitate before using an AED and those few seconds could mean life or death for the person needing care.

Would like to find out how you can show your support for this important piece of legislation? Then sign up for our You're The Cure network here.



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