With “Restart A Heart Day” on October 16, 2021, it is a timely reminder to all of us how time is such a critical factor related to surviving a Sudden Cardiac Arrest and why Defibrillators (AED’s) are so important.
As a global initiative, “Restart a Heart Day” is designed to raise awareness and educate the community on the importance of learning CPR and having access to Defibrillators (AED’s) in the workplace and in our communities.
So what is a Defibrillator (AED)?
- AED – Stands for Automatic External Defibrillator. An AED is the same as a Defibrillator, or ‘Defib’.
- A Defibrillator is a sophisticated life-saving device used to treat Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA), a condition that occurs when the heart unexpectedly stops pumping due to an underlying medical condition.
- 30,000+ Sudden Cardiac Arrests occur every year in Australia and unfortunately, without defibrillation and CPR, fewer than 5% survive. Every minute that passes without defibrillation reduces the chance of survival by 10%.
- If you do use a Defibrillator within the first few minutes of sudden cardiac arrest, it can increase the survival rate to as high as 70%. Therefore, it is vital that more people become aware of what Defibrillators are, how to find them, and how to use them.
Why you need a Defibrillator during a sudden cardiac arrest:
- Defibrillation within the first few minutes of having a Sudden Cardiac Arrest increases the chance of survival to over 70%
- Without early defibrillation with an AED, less than 5% of cardiac arrest victims survive
- Without defibrillation, for every minute that passes, the chance of survival reduces by 10%
- Average Ambulance response times in Australia in capital cities are approximately 10-15 minutes in metro areas and up to 30 minutes in regional areas – defibrillation in combination with CPR gives victims the best chance of survival when waiting for Ambulance to arrive
How do you use a Defibrillator?
Defibs are simple and easy to use. When you do a First Aid course with CPR First Aid we teach you how to use a defibrillator and anyone can use one to save a life.
It is just a matter of opening up the Defibrillator and it will instantly give you voice prompts to follow. It doesn’t skip ahead and will keep repeating the instruction until each step has been completed, making it a reassuring guide in what is a stressful situation.
In an ideal situation, CPR should be done while someone else is retrieving the Defibrillator. If CPR is done as soon as possible, there is a better chance of keeping the heart in ‘fibrillation’ or a ‘shockable rhythm’. Although you don’t need to be trained in First Aid, of course, training beforehand increases your confidence and preparedness in using a Defibrillator. It helps people understand where the AED fits into the DRSABCD process and the chain of survival. This can definitely save precious minutes that might be wasted in opening and positioning the Defibrillator, which is why we recommend you complete First Aid training and do regular refreshers.
How to choose a defibrillator:
Choosing a defibrillator can be tough, with so many types out there, it can be hard to know where to start. While all defibrillators can be used in the event of a sudden cardiac arrest, features that can improve the chance of it being used quickly in the event of a first aid emergency should be on your list. Things to look for which our range offers:
- Easy to use
- Light to carry
- TGA Approved
- Fast shock delivery
- For outdoor use – shockproof and water-resistant
How many defibrillators do I need?
We recommend that all businesses, social clubs, and venues have a defibrillator. For large warehouses and manufacturing sites, we recommend multiple defibrillators within easy reach that are easily identified by First Aid trained staff.
For more information on the Defibrillators offered by CPR First Aid please visit:
For more information on “Restart A Heart Date” please visit: https://restartaheart.net/