AUTOMATED EXTERNAL DEFIBRILLATORS

By Bob Katzen

The Baker administration announced the awarding of $527,000 in grants to cities and towns to purchase Automated External Defibrillators (AED) for public safety and first responder vehicles that will equip 246 vehicles serving about 70 percent of the state’s cities and towns.

The governor’s office described an AED as a medical device used to support people experiencing sudden cardiac arrest, which is the abrupt loss of heart function in a person who may or may not have been diagnosed with heart disease. The AED analyzes the patient’s heart rhythm and, if necessary, delivers an electrical shock, or defibrillation, to help the heart re-establish an effective rhythm. A study from the American Heart Association found that 350,000 people suffer sudden cardiac arrest outside of the hospital every year in the U.S.

“Emergency responders bring their training and expertise to scenes where every second counts,” said Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito. “Our administration continues to focus on equipping local public safety departments with training, safety equipment, programming and operational support. Complementing the experience of first responders, AEDs create an opportunity to positively change a too often fatal outcome.”

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