New Equipment 

We have a new medical device located in the Rec Center,  an Automated External Defibrillator, or AED.  What is an AED?

An AED is a lightweight, portable device that delivers an electric shock through the chest to the heart. The shock can potentially stop an irregular heart beat (arrhythmia) and allow a normal rhythm to resume following sudden cardiac arrest (SCA). SCA occurs when the heart malfunctions and stops beating unexpectedly. If not treated within minutes, it quickly leads to death. Most SCAs result from ventricular fibrillation (VF). VF is a rapid and unsynchronized heart rhythm that originates in the heart’s lower chambers (the ventricles). The heart must be “defibrillated” quickly, because a victim’s chance of surviving drops by seven to 10 percent for every minute a normal heartbeat isn’t restored.

Why are AEDs important?

AEDs make it possible for ordinary people to respond to a medical emergency where defibrillation is required, and can be an important part of emergency response programs that also include rapid use of 9-1-1 and prompt delivery of CPR. All three of these activities are vital to improving survival from SCA.

How does an AED work?

The AED’s built-in computer checks a victim’s heart rhythm through adhesive electrodes. The computer calculates whether defibrillation is needed. If it is, a recorded voice prompts the rescuer to press the shock button on the AED. This shock momentarily stuns the heart and stops all activity. It gives the heart the chance to resume beating effectively. Audible prompts guide the user through the process. AEDs advise a shock only for ventricular fibrillation or pulseless ventricular tachycardia.

Who can use an AED?

AEDs are intended for use by the general public. Most AEDs use audible voice prompts to guide the user through the process. Non-medical responders such as police, fire service personnel, flight attendants, security guards and others who have been trained in CPR can use AEDs. Although training in the use of an AED is not required, it is recommended to build confidence.

There will be instructional classes scheduled on the use of the AED.  Watch the Clark Chronicles and this website for dates and times. A big “Thank You” to Lavonne McNabb for spending her time teaching the First Aid CPR/AED class in September 2019.  Let’s be prepared! 

Are AEDs safe to use?

AEDs are designed to be used by anyone. Studies have shown that AEDs are able to detect the need for defibrillation 90 percent of the time.  AEDs are highly effective in detecting when or when not to deliver a shock, and the user doesn’t need to be concerned about making unqualified  medical decisions.

(Information taken from “What Is an Automated External Defibrillator”title, © 2017, American Heart Association)

Walkers Needed

Now that we have the new AED, we need to have our walkers back for the winter.  Sue Goldberg will gladly turn the heat on in the gym during Zumba time to accommodate those who want to keep in shape by walking laps in the gym during the winter months.  Please check the Events page for the monthly Zumba schedule.