Automated External Defibrillators – AEDs

What is an AED?

The acronym ‘AED’ stands for Automated External Defibrillator, it is an electronic instrument used to treat and resuscitate victims of a sudden cardiac arrest, or “ventricular fibrillation”.
An AED is often used alongside traditional methods of CPR in an attempt to restore function to the victims cardio system when in cardiac arrest.

With AED’s becoming more affordable and more widely available, they are becoming widely accepted as a critical component of any first aid kit. They are now widely utilized within industrial workplaces, commercial workplaces and even schools.

The key benefit to AED’s is that they allow for early intervention, usually within minutes of an event occurring. When attended to quickly, and when utilizing traditional CPR alongside Automated External Defibrillators, the victims chances of survival and recovery are vastly increased.
When considering a typical workplace incident and the latency involved in triggering first responder services, it is not unusual for an AED equipped business to reduce treatment time by as much as 75%.

Of course with AED access comes the need for AED training, and it is important that the person administering Automated External Defibrillators is able to asses the situation and make an accurate determination that an AED intervention is indeed necessary.
There is in fact a potential liability situation arising from the use of AEDs by inadequately trained personnel, so it’s important as an employer to ensure that you obtain the equipment but also provide training on its use.
As far as any legal implications are concerned, with respect to the employer, it is more likely that an employer receive an adverse legal judgement for not providing access to AED’s than one for improper training or implementation.


What are the AED availability options and choices?

There are various companies manufacturing AED products, including the Philips brand, which is indeed one of the more popular.
As a Provision First Aid distributor providing van delivered first aid supplies we can supply you with high quality AEDs for sale to your customers, along with all of the requisite training and support information. [For more information on become a Provision first aid distributor, click here]

From the Philips website here:

Philips HeartStart HomePhilips AED
Benefits / Key Points –
    Ready to go
    Save critical time
    Life Guidance features with clear voice instructions

HeartStart OnSite
Benefits / Key Points –
    Step-by-step guide so you know exactly what to do
    Ready to use when you need it
    Fast shocks to improve treatment success

HeartStart FR3
Benefits / Key Points –
    SMART Pads III
    Easy to maneuver in tight places
    Quick Shock

HeartStart FRxphilips heart start AED
Benefits / Key Points –
    Built for rugged environments
    Easily used on infants and children
    Low maintenance to be ready when you need it
    Detailed defibrillation guidance so you know what to do

In addition to the Philips AED’s we have access to other brands and other products suitable for CPR and Cardiac Resuscitation situations.

The PhilipsHeartStart FR3 comes with our highest recommendation from the Philips AED product line.  We consider this product to be their best professional-grade AED, with the benefits of a compact design and a rugged construction. It is tough, reliable and you can depend on it functioning as and when it is needed.
Some of the key features of the Philips FR3 include –

1 – Automatic turn on as soon as the case is opened. There is no fiddling with power switches or settings in an emergency situation where time is critical and emotions can be running high.
2 – Has a Quick-shock system where a rapid shock can be administered in eight seconds (of charging) if the situation requires such.
3 – Suitable for adults and children without the need to switch pads.
4 – Automatic self-testing in storage to ensure full operation when needed.
5 – Small, lightweight, easy to carry, easy to use.
6 – Can be configured for bilingual operation.

Clearly AEDs are becoming increasingly sophisticated hence cementing their place in any safety-conscious work environment.

OSHA and AED’s

OSHA standards change periodically and it is up to the employer to seek the latest standards pertaining to their specific business, so this section is offered for general information only and is valid at the time of writing.
As of February 2016, OSHA does not have standards in place which are specific to automated external defibrillators, but it does have certain information and guidelines.

OSHA appears to be fully supportive of employers making available AEDs in the workplace and point to the fact that “Approximately 890 deaths from coronary heart disease occur outside of the hospital or emergency room every day. Most of these deaths are due to the sudden loss of heart function or sudden cardiac death.”
More information can be found on the OSHA website here

Clearly the main stage for any business reviewing their status re OSHA compliance is to determine which regulations are applicable to their business and to determine the governing authority.

OSHA is very much a proactive agency, one who operates a nationwide staff of inspectors who police the workplace and make often times unscheduled checks on workplace operating conditions. Fines are imposed on business owners where non compliance is evident, and repeated infractions can result in the forced suspension of work related activities. Clearly there is a considerable cost potential for failing to comply with OSHA standards. In many cases, mitigating circumstances can be taken into consideration when an infraction occurs, and where a company is seen to be safety conscious with a good safety record, it is taken into consideration when assessment of an individual incident is made. Operating with clear employee safety policies, providing well maintained first aid equipment and supplies and going above and beyond what might be required to achieve legal compliance, are all factors taken into consideration during OSHA inspections.

With this is mind, adopting and utilizing state of the art equipment and resources such as AEDs in the workplace, would seem to be intuitive and to make good business/commercial sense for any responsible business. [Read more about ANSI / OSHA and first aid requirements]

Contact us today for more information!