When it comes to numbers and probabilities, Risk Managers are in their element. So it may not be shocking for you to learn that more than 1,000 Americans are affected by Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) every single day. According to the National Safety Council, that’s over 40 people every hour! Even more harrowing is the fact that, on average, only 10% of people who suffer from an SCA outside of a hospital survive, according to research by the American Heart Association.
While these statistics have been acknowledged on a federal level, with laws requiring access to AEDs in public spaces, exact regulations vary from state to state and often don’t mandate businesses to implement dedicated AED programs of their own. According to the CDC, all 50 states have one or more laws to increase the availability and use of AEDs, limit civil liability for lay bystander AED use, and to require businesses, schools, and others to implement Public Access Defibrillator programs. (You can find information about legislative requirements in your state on the PlusTrac™ website, here.)
In this article, we’ll explore some tips for getting the most from your AED management.
If you don’t have an AED in your workplace, get one
Risk-averse AED management tip number one: get an AED. The best way to reduce the risk of losing an employee to cardiac arrest is to have lifesaving technology nearby when disaster strikes. AEDs have been proven time and time again to drastically increase the chances of survival until trained medical professionals arrive on the scene. Remember the 10% survival rate mentioned above? Well, if CPR and an AED are used, that survival rate increases to nearly 40%, according to research by Johns Hopkins University. That’s a fourfold increase in survivability, which is extremely significant when it’s a matter of life and death. By implementing an AED management program and increasing access to the devices, you could prevent the loss of your organization’s most valuable assets: your employees. This offers the additional benefit of boosting employee morale which, in turn, can increase productivity.
Training is essential
To ensure that AEDs are used properly when needed, it’s essential for as many employees as possible to be trained accordingly. This training should include using the device, as well as CPR techniques and related activities. Without such training, there will be a higher risk of fatalities and liability in the event of an unexpected cardiac arrest in your workplace. You can learn more about the different types of AED and CPR training available, and which programs would be best suited for compliance and risk management in your organization, on our PlusLearning™ page here.
Make sure it’s easy to find
The AED should be located in an easy-to-find place that’s clearly visible. If employees can’t find the AED in an emergency, company risk and liability may increase significantly. The last thing you want is for all the mechanisms to be in place and available to save an employee’s life, but for everything to be jeopardized by obscure AED location or signage that’s unclear. Remember that, according to the American Heart Association, the chances of survival decrease by 7–10% for every minute that passes without CPR or defibrillation.
PlusTrac™ AED Management can provide you with the step-by-step guidance you need to perform critical first aid care during a sudden cardiac event.
Click here to start your free PlusTrac™ AED management trial.