The use of AED’s in care homes

The use of AED’s in care homes

Quite simply, the more automatic external defibrillators (AEDs) that are installed in public areas, the better. A sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) can occur to anyone at any time, and with over 100,000 dying every year after suffering one, the more people that know about AED’s, the more likely the survival rate will increase.

As mentioned however, a SCA can strike at any moment meaning that a large amount of the time, a victim will not be in hospital and will be simply carrying out their daily routines meaning a passerby on the street may need life saving care in an instant.

Although SCA’s occur mostly out of the blue and act fast, if an AED is used within the first minute of an emergency, the survival rate for a victim increases be an impressive 90%. Over the years, there has been a huge drive to increase the number of AED’s installed all over the UK, in turn meaning that you may have seen them popping up in your local supermarket, at work or in schools.

With this, having an AED installed in a care home is something that should be considered essential. Providing a duty of care to all residents, having an AED installed in care homes means that should anyone suffer a SCA, they can receive the appropriate care straight away.

Despite SCA’s striking anyone regardless of gender, ethnicity and physical ability, the chances of suffering a SCA do increase with age. Understanding this means that care homes can appropriately prepare should an emergency occur and should a resident ever suffer a SCA, a defibrillator is nearby to help save their life.

As SCA’s work very quickly, the likelihood of surviving decreases by 10% every minute that passes by without the use of an AED and although 75% of ambulances arrive within eight minutes, this unfortunately may not be quick enough in an emergency. Using an AED can help save precious minutes of a victims life allowing the emergency services to take further care of the patient, knowing that they have been saved thanks to a defibrillator.

Having first aid training to use an AED is also something to not worry about. Although most care home staff will be well versed with first aid, AED’s are designed to be user friendly meaning anyone at all would be able to use one. Whether staff, friends or family members needs to use and AED in a care home, they are equipped with helpful visual and audio guides throughout, guiding anyone through the care giving process.

It is important not to worry when using an AED. The thought of using such equipment although sounds daunting, really is life saving. AED’s cleverly scan the electrical rhythm of a victims heart and will never deliver a shock unless one is needed. Giving peace of mind that they are easy to use and very safe are what makes AED’s such impressive pieces of medical equipment.

Having an AED installed in a care home is not currently a legal requirement by law however, the Care Quality Commission recommend that the minimum suggested equipment to support CPR should include an AED amongst other pieces of medial equipment such as oxygen, a stethoscope and protective equipment such as gloves, aprons and eye protection.

There are of course many AED’s on the market making choosing the best option for a care home a little challenging. Backed by impressive technology and a long standing history of excellence, for care homes we recommend CU Medical Defibrillators. With their collection including the i-PAD SP1 Defibrillator which is endorsed by the British Heart Foundation Part Funding Programme, you can be sure that you are getting a market leading defibrillator.

Equally as impressive, the Primedic Heartsave AED is well manufactured with simple operations and is ranked very highly when it comes to safety and quality standards.

When looking online, opting for an AED that is suitable for indoors, can be easily stored and just as easily reached is the most important factor. Knowing that you have an AED at your care home not only gives your residents peace of mind, but also staff and visitors.

5th Nov 2019 Christopher Maltby CW

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