Although Richland County School District One has implemented an AED Program and AED's are presently located in our secondary schools and some administrative centers, the district is not guaranteeing that an AED will be available for all cardiac emergencies, or that the use of the AED will save a life. 


    AED (Automated External Defibrillator) Program Document
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    AED Frequently Asked Questions (from the American Heart Association)


    What does AED stand for?

    AED stands for automated external defibrillator.


    What's an AED?
    An AED is a device used to administer an electric shock through the chest wall to the heart. Built-in computers assess the patient's heart rhythm, judge whether defibrillation is needed and then administer the shock. Audible and/or visual prompts guide the user through the process.


    How does an AED work?
    A microprocessor inside the defibrillator interprets (analyzes) the victim's heart rhythm through adhesive electrodes. (Some models of AEDs require you to press an ANALYZE button.) The computer analyzes the heart rhythm and advises the operator whether a shock is needed. AEDs advise a shock only for ventricular fibrillation and fast ventricular tachycardia. (Fast ventricular tachycardia is a life-threatening arrhythmia in which the contractions of the heart are ineffective. As in VF, an electrical shock can correct this condition.) The electric current is delivered through the victim's chest wall through adhesive electrode pads.


    Why are AEDs important?
    AEDs strengthen the chain of survival. They can restore a normal heart rhythm in sudden cardiac arrest victims. Also, new portable models allow more people to respond to a medical emergency where defibrillation is required. When a person suffers a sudden cardiac arrest, for each minute that passes without defibrillation, their chance of survival decreases by 7-10 percent. AEDs save lives!


    Who'd use an AED?
    Most AEDs are designed to be used by non- medical personnel such as police, fire service personnel, flight attendants, security guards and other lay rescuers who have been properly trained. Having more people in the community who can respond to a medical emergency by providing defibrillation will greatly increase sudden cardiac arrest survival rates.


    Why does someone having a heart attack need an AED?
    When a heart attack becomes a full cardiac arrest, the heart most often goes into uncoordinated electric activity called ventricular fibrillation. The heart twitches ineffectively and can't pump blood. The AED delivers electric current to the heart muscle, momentarily stunning the heart and stopping all activity. This gives the heart an opportunity to resume beating effectively.


    Will an AED always resuscitate someone in cardiac arrest?
    An AED only treats a fibrillating heart. In cardiac arrest without ventricular fibrillation, the heart doesn't respond to electric currents but needs medications and breathing support instead. Also, AEDs are less successful when the victim has been in cardiac arrest for longer than a few minutes, especially if no CPR was provided.


    Is an AED safe to use?
    An AED is safe to use by anyone who's been trained to operate it. Studies have shown the devices to be 90 percent sensitive (able 90 percent of the time to detect a rhythm that should be defibrillated) and 95 percent specific (able to recommend not shocking when defibrillation is not indicated). Because of the wide variety of situations in which they will typically be used, AEDs are designed with multiple safeguards and warnings before any energy is released. AEDs are programmed to deliver a shock only when they have detected an irregular heart rhythm called ventricular fibrillation (VF) or fast ventricular tachycardia. However, there are potential dangers associated with AED use. That's why training - including safety and maintenance - is important.The AHA recommends that anyone who lives or works where an AED is available for use by lay rescuers participate in a Heartsaver AED course. AEDs are so user-friendly that untrained rescuers can generally succeed in attaching the pads, pressing ANALYZE (if required), and delivering shocks. Untrained rescuers, however, may not know when to use an AED, and they may not use an AED safely, posing some danger of electric shock to themselves and others. Also, untrained rescuers wouldn't know how to respond to the victim when the AED prompts "no shock indicated." An operator needs only to follow the illustrations on the electrode pads and the control panel, and listen and follow the voice prompts (for example, "Do not touch the patient."). An AED will deliver a shock only when a shock is advised and the operator pushes the SHOCK button. This prevents a shock from being delivered accidentally.


    Are AEDs safe to use on children?
    An AED should not be used on a child younger than eight years old.


    Will I get zapped if I shock a victim in the rain or near water?
    It's remotely possible to get shocked or to shock bystanders if there's standing water around and under the patient. Try to move the patient to a dry area and cut off wet clothing. Also be sure that the skin has been toweled off so the electrode pads will stick to the skin. At the moment you press the SHOCK button, you must make sure that no one, including yourself (the AED operator), touches any part of the victim.





    ZOLL AED Plus Frequently Asked Questions


    How did ZOLL chose the color of its AED?

    The color is unusual but it met the needs that focus groups and users told us were most important. An AED had to be highly visible so that the product could be found easily when needed. Public safety staff and especially policemen were concerned about leaving it behind so they wanted it highly visible. Actually the color is quite commonly used around the world when high visibility is required. Just look at airports and many other transportation type applications. So high visibility was the first characteristic in our choice .


    What else was important about color was that it be "warm" to the prospective infrequent operator. We did not want a color that suggested danger or high voltage to AED users. An Aid's color should be warm so as to encourage people to want to use an AED. No AED should threaten the user by its color.


    The ZOLL AED intelface seems to look rather different compared to other AEOs?

    This is the world's first AED to address all aspects of the rescue. not just the shock. The interface reflects the complexity of what a rescuer must remember.

    After all, "an AED is primarily a defibrillator and its interface". When it comes to an interface for helping the infrequent, less experienced rescuer. we can't imagine anything better than the graphical interface that we have developed. People learn and recall things best when they hear see and do them. When these visual prompts are used in conjunction with the rescuers initial training, we believe the pictures, voice, and text prompts combined will be a powerful motivator and support system for the infrequent rescuer.

    Do I have to wait for the entire picture LEOs to sequence before I can defibrillate?

    No the pictures do not stop you from immediately attaching the CPRD padz. In this way in the ZOLL AED Plus works like any other ordinary AED. Once the electrodes are attached it will begin analysis automatically and in this respect works just like the early model AEDs. The new ZOLL AED Plus is the best of both worlds. If you are skilled at recognizing cardiac arrest you can work as quickly as you want to rapidly deliver shocks. If you are not as experienced, you have a good support system to help you get through the rescue. Have it your way.


    Every single step in the Hearl Saver course isn't included. For Instance like look listen and feel for breathing.

    There is a trade off between telling their rescue too much and giving him enough to just prompt his best recollections of his training, We have aired on the side of not trying to cover every detail of the Heart Saver but just enough to make sure you get the desired rescuer behavior and prompt recall of their training. We think we have the right blend and could add additional voice prompts at some later date if we felt this was important and would enhance rescuer performance,


    What about having spare batteries and changing batteries?

    It is possible to keep extra batteries with this device in a special sleeve that batteries come with. Some recommendations would tend to suggest this may need to be done to comply with rules for the use of AEDs such as having a "spare battery available. Having extra batteries in the ambulance or police car or fire truck or on the nursing units would probably meet the intent of the regulations.


    Be aware however, that most recommendations on batteries date back to bad experiences with rechargeable nickel cadmium batteries due to memory and sustained overcharge rather than the newer long life lithium manganese cells that are designed for 10 year shelf life and a single use.


    The ZOLL AED Plus is a new generation product and the lithium batteries are long lasting and reliable. The self-test feature and warning tones should help insure batteries are replaced, While we made provision for spares, it would be difficult for an 'nfrequent operator, in the midst of the one cardiac arrest they have ever had to treat, to change a battery pack or open the battery compartment to change batteries, An AED should prevent this from happening by monitoring capacity and underrating the batteries life.

    How does the CPR depth gauge sensor work on different size patients? It can't work tor every patient since chests are different?

    The CPR depth gauge sensor doesn't work differently on different size patients. It works the same all the time because it measures depth of compression not force of compression. We don't measure force and converting it to depth. We are actually measuring motion and converting that to inches. Therefore, the accelerometer is capable of measuring the actual depth against a target depth.


    What about use of the ZOLL AED Plus on pediatric patients?

    We do not have an indication for use with pediatric patients at the present time. This will be phased into the ZOll AED Plus at a later date. We are currently working with the FDA and anticipate receiving approval some time in the near future.


    How can one size electrode fit all patients?

    We studied and measured many individuals to be sure we developed measurements of actual populations.


    We also sized the electrodes to match the highest percentile measurements of anthropometric data so it would be more common for the electrodes to fit patients rather than not fit patients. We think the simplicity of the one-piece design is appealing in terms of the way it simplifies the whole process of AED use and attachment. It helps with the greater good.


    Also, it is important not to assume that two separate electrodes are simple are in fact. One of the most common focus group complaints was related to the complexity of using two electrodes, handling the parts and pieces and where to put them. Where they wind up has not been studied to our knowledge.


    What If I leave the unit on with the cover in place after manually checking it with the power switch?

    It won't stay on. To insure this can't occur it has a built-in sleep timer so it won't fully deplete the batteries. The sleep timer can be configured to turn the device off after 5, 10, 15, 20 or 30 minutes.


    What if someone moves a paUent with a possible neck injury to place the PASS under the shoulders?

    Cervical spine injury requires recognition by the rescuer regardless of whether they are using the PASS or other

    recommended airway maneuvers or adjuncts. The problem is not that a PASS is available but that the possible injury is unrecognized and appropriate precautions not taken.


    Medical control authorities can decide to use or not use the PASS depending on the rescuer and skill level. Delete it from teaching and remove the label in the top cover of the device if it is not to be included as