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Why are more and more communities choosing to implement Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs)? The evidence is clear: Early defibrillation programs save lives. Additionally, with every passing minute after sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) occurs, a victim's chance of survival decreases by ten-percent. It is vital that a victim requiring defibrillation receive it as soon as possible. With greater than 1,000 people in the U.S. suffering SCA each day, pressure is building on local governments to better protect our communities.

Having AEDs within your community will help sudden cardiac arrest victims from losing critical time waiting for emergency responders. This is time that these victims of SCA cannot afford to lose. Despite advances in resuscitation medicine and local Fire/EMS’s best efforts, the statistics for “out of hospital” survival is still low.

Due to the frequency of sudden cardiac arrest, the apparent solution to this major health epidemic is the placement and immediate availability and use of Automated External Defibrillators. Public Access Defibrillation (PAD) – the placement of AEDs in public places where your minimally trained personnel or the general public can use them – is a growing success story with cardiac arrest survival rates. These rates in some cities have increased by 50-75%.

Making AEDs available throughout a community — from schools, libraries, parks, civic centers, sporting arenas, or any public place community members gather — is a proven way to save lives.

Why Start An AED Program?

Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) deaths are far more common in some cities than in others, a USA TODAY analysis found. Emergency medical systems in a majority of the nation's 50 largest cities save only an estimated 6% to 10% of the victims of sudden cardiac arrest who realistically could be saved, which is the national average. But if all major cities followed the steps taken by Seattle, Boston, Oklahoma City, Tulsa and a few others that measure the truer response time, they could raise the survival rate to 20% or more, and about 1,000 more lives would be saved.

IN CITIES WHERE DEFIBRILLATORS ARE MORE WIDELY AVAILABLE ... ...and there is emphasis on timely application, such as in Seattle, Washington, it has been found that the survival rate can be increased to as much as 30%, far above the national survival rate of 5% or less. If a 30% survival rate could be achieved nationally, it would result in the saving of more than 100,000 lives annually or more than 250 lives per day.