New Emergency Instruction Device (EID) Launches in Europe

April 26, 2010

Think Safe is proud to write about our 2010 European EID that is now available in Dutch and European English.  For Please see:  http://bit.ly/RescueMate for full details.

"RescueMate"

European EID – RescueMate

This EID has everything you need and is European & ECC compliant:
– first aid, AED and CPR training and emergency use
– fire training
– evacuation training
– communication training

A full occupational health tool for any workplace or organization!

COMING SOON!  German and French languages

For more details on how to distribute this product, please contact us at 888-473-1777 or complete the form below and we will be happy to contact you.

Advertisements

AEDs: Use by Hospitals, Nursing Homes and Healthcare Providers

April 26, 2010

Just what is the standard or duty to provide care of healthcare, long-term care or elderly care providers for Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs)?

From my consistent research and study of the AED industry, the standard appears to be that many nursing homes, elderly housing complexes or assisted living facilities still do not have an AED policy or program.   In 2007 a summary study within the industry showed:

http://www.jamda.com/article/S1525-8610%2807%2900207-1/abstract

Contrarily, here is an Ohio-based midwest article on AEDs & some facilities who have decided to implement AED programs:  http://www.redorbit.com/news/health/358076/many_nursing_homes_lack_device_to_restart_heart_portable_defibrillators/

Now, not taken into consideration is the question regarding “duty to provide care” – and what is really the up-to-date 2010 standard to provide care as it relates to AEDs or CPR in these facilities?

*  Are there any industry mandates taking place? What is the healthcare industry doing about AEDs?

*  What are the trends for DNR orders or Attempted CPR- are the number of DNR orders going up or down as a % of population being admitted to healthcare facilities?  Should nursing homes or long-term care facilities have solid AED programs in place due to a decreasing % of DNR orders and more patient preferences to attempt CPR?

In January 2010 there was a great article I read that showed how UCLA is implementing AED programs across their system, due to the improvement in SCA survival they offer. UCLA Article

Nursing Studies Show AEDs improve SCA response times (this is an additional Nurse.com article on SCA & AEDs in the industry)

I have also read many articles/studies in recent years on in-hospital SCA survival versus out-of-hospital survival and perhaps UCLA is trying to improve SCA survival and change the statistics, which show IN-HOSPITAL survival is lower than OUT-OF-HOSPITAL per many studies.  The above link shows the obstacles facing nurses and staff and why AEDs may be a welcome addition to healthcare facilities.

Regarding long-term and elderly facility industry practices such as DNR advanced directives

President, Think Safe Inc

Paula Wickham, AED Industry Expert

are followed.  But, methods for identifying CPR status need improvement to enable accurate identification and prompt resuscitation of residents who want CPR:

http://www.gnjournal.com/article/S0197-4572%2898%2990117-3/abstract

It is known that ACPR is infrequently performed in long-term care setting and is rarely successful (successful being defined as admission to the hospital alive).  Survival (defined as discharge from the hospital) is also rare but survival does occur though. All nursing homes are not required to offer ACPR and many nursing homes in the United States, as well as in other parts of the world, do not offer ACPR.

In my assessment from my research, agencies such as the American Bar Association’s Commission on Law & Aging show that about two-thirds (2/3) of the adult population does not have an advanced directive or DNR.  I could not find any recent studies to answer my DNR questions on DNR preferences.

Recent mandates or pending mandates and “encouraged use” Bills have passed in recent years in the following states that are for assisted living facilities or long-term and medical facilities:  Texas, New Jersey, New York, Nevada, Florida and others.

Perhaps it will some day become an expectation for all long-term facilities to have an AED and perform CPR but for now, it appears that each facility has to make their own decision but for sure they should consider their state’s legislation or pending legislation as it affects licensing for their facility.

One exerpt of a study states, “Surveys have shown that many elderly in different parts of the world want to be resuscitated, but may lack knowledge about the specifics of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). Data from countries other than the US is limited, but differences in physician and patient opinions by nationality regarding CPR do exist.”  In the essence of observing the opinions of those elderly that do want to be resuscitated – perhaps there will be some marketing advantage to employ by organizations that implement AED programs.

This article was written by Paula Wickham, President of Think Safe and AED industry expert.  Think Safe has an entire staff of technical experts for AED bills, laws and mandates.  If you would like more information on AED mandates or pending mandates for your long-term or elderly care facility, you may reach us at 888-473-1777 or by emailing info@think-safe.com and requesting a copy or link to your state’s requirements.


Why do we need AEDs at work or in public areas?

April 6, 2010

Why are AEDs being mandated and required or “expected” as a standard of care in many places?

We are talking about the nation’s leading killer; killing more people than strokes, AIDS and breast cancer in the US annually.  Each year, more than 300,000 Americans experience sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) outside of a hospital. SCA affects people of all ages and with many types of heart problems, but occurs most commonly in adults with coronary artery disease, and so it will only become more common as America ages.

On average in the U.S., just 6.4% of SCA victims survive. Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and early defibrillation with an automated external defibrillator (AED) take chances of survival to over 65%. In fact, early defibrillation (within 2-4 minutes ideally) with CPR is the only way to restore the SCA victim’s heart rhythm to normal. For every minute that passes without CPR and defibrillation, the chances of survival decrease by around 10%. However, there are not enough AEDs and persons trained in using AEDs and performing CPR to provide this life-saving treatment, resulting in lost opportunities to save more lives. Tragically, 64% of Americans have never even seen an AED. AED PROGRAMS CAN AND DO IMPROVE SURVIVAL RATES.   Communities with comprehensive AED programs that include training of anticipated rescuers in both CPR and AED use have achieved survival rates of 65 percent or higher. Making AEDs more available to lay responders trained in their use saves lives; remember that these are proven to be easy to use and fail-proof FDA approved public use devices.

Why should I be a champion for AEDs?   Can’t we just call 911?
The national average for EMS response in the US is 8-10 minutes.  It is recommended (for best chances of survival) AEDs be used early on and ideally within 2-4 minutes.  There is a very good chance emergency medical services (EMS) cannot respond fast enough to save someone in cardiac arrest, particularly in congested urban areas, high-rise buildings, in remote rural areas, or large facilities. Besides traffic, consider the time needed to make it through building security or in a crowded shopping mall with multiple escalators and all the way to a victim, for example.

“What constitutes gross negligence isn’t spelled out in the law. Per product liability attorneys specializing in AED case law, organizations that have heavy traffic are more at risk if they fail to comply with “standards to provide care” and don’t have an AED at all.  Any facility manager, HR manager or a safety, EHS director at any large or high traffic facility should consider ramifications of not having at least one on premises in the event of Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA).  It is most likely their own job they are putting on the line and they should argue hard for them.  As a value-add for those directors whom can’t get top down management on board and funding is an obstacle, they should get hard copy evidence on file from their management if they can not get approval for purchase.  The old “CYA” policy!

If you would like to see examples of current AED case law and how settlements and lawsuits have fallen, please contact our AED LAW experts at info@think-safe.com or 888-473-1777.

Products to consider sold by Think Safe to help your organization with AED funding and placement assistance:  AED grants or AED brands and models available.  Contact our AED GRANT DEPARMENT at grants@think-safe.com for more information and best pricing or match funding on the market for your AED funding solutions.