Think Safe recentlydeveloped an integrated solution for one of the nation’s leading providers of accounting, tax and consulting services. This new client has more than 6,000 employees and associates in about 75 cities nationwide. The client’s goal was to have a best practice first aid program to include Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) and appropriate first aid supplies that ensured a high-level of readiness at all times yet was user-friendly and affordable. The company’s office suites are low risk of injury workplaces but a specific goal was to address the need to respond to the nation’s biggest killer – Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) – which claims the lives of over 300,000 people annually. Key decision makers at the company were well aware of some key information that OSHA had released on the topic. ” Employers should consider use of AEDs at their work sites to reduce the time to defibrillation with the goal of improving survival.”
These offices are now fully equipped to deal with any medical illness or injury-related emergency situations with their investment of proper first aid equipment, AEDs, and site specific employee training. This program and client showcase how multi-facility organizations can implement affordable employee benefit programs and safety practices that offer improved emergency preparedness across a common culture without human resources drain or capital drain. The average cost per employee for the entire program was less than $2 per employee per year over a 5 year period (the costs drop to pennies per employee after that).
Will they ever get a return on this minimal investment? Well, is saving even one life enough of a return? One employee shared a story of an event that occurred at their office, “An employee was walking by a tax partner’s office when she saw him slumped over his desk. It looked like he was sleeping so the co-worker went into his office and found him unresponsive. The co-worker immediately initiated the Emergency Response Plan (ERP) and an AED was retrieved by a tax secretary. The secretary used the AED and revived the tax partner (shock was advised by the AED) while someone else called 911. The tax partner was very fit and in good shape so it was a surprise to everyone when they found out he had a cardiac arrest. The tax partner survived thanks to the AED machine and the quick action by the employees. The paramedics and doctors said the partner would likely have not have survived, if the defibrillator had not been used at the office and they had waited for EMS to arrive.”
In choosing Think Safe the above medical-related first aid emergency could be addressed. However, Think Safe was picked as the provider of choice because they offered a unique, innovative, simple & user-friendly, and affordable AED and first aid program solution for other emergencies that might occur at the workplace. Think Safe is the manufacturer and patent owner of the First Voice Emergency Instruction Device (EID) and this “first aid tablet” can guide employees through any major or minor first aid emergency and giving reminders or when to: call 911, check scene safety, use personal protection, provide treatment and how to or what not to do, and what to do after the incident or during for record keeping.
Each client location implemented the following First Voice equipment and services (see picture):
Easy to access medical-related emergency equipment including AED, first aid kit, Emergency Instruction Device (EID) and signage.
AED in carrying case with adult 4 yr pads, 4 yr battery and full 10 year warranty
Alarmed AED wall-mounted cabinet (helps aid in notification of AED use; response needed when alarm sounds)
“V-shaped” Wall sign (8×10” faces) for above AED cabinet to help improve visibility of AED location from any angle
Tamper Evident AED Fast Response Scissors/Razor Kit with use instructions
Laminated AED Use Protocols (attached to AED case for easy reference during AED use)
50 Person OSHA/ANSI Compliant First Aid Kit with Pocket Refill System (comes with tamper-evident seals)
To ensure legal protection and ongoing program compliance Think Safe also provided the following services:
Online & Blended Certified Training for CPR/First Aid/BBP (ILCOR/ECC/AHA/Red Cross/National First Aid Science compliant) that comes with Course Completion Tracking & Includes Refresher Training & Tracking
Training DVD or online training link for “Brand of preference” AED picked (HR Dept keeps this DVD and uses corporate key code for free AED training to provide any new employees or for use at employee meetings as a refresher training tool)
Think Safe documents provided for workplace postings help communicate key information. (Included with Site Administrator Toolkit)
Site Administrator Tool Kit to include all AED Program Communication Tools (AED Site Assessment assistance (where to put AED), Company-wide AED information distribution & Email notice templates, CPR/AED posters, AED policy template, Emergency Response Plan (ERP) documents & integration, EMS Notification/Registration, “AED Equipped” location stickers to remind employees of AED location inside office, inspection tag system, AED location thumbnail decals for evacuation/exit charts at facilities, Free AED prescription, and more…)
Online First Voice Manager AED Program Management Software for Auto Notification Reminders, Tracking & Reporting on AED consumables (pads, battery) and any first aid or other safety program supplies or training www.firstvoicemanager.com (works on any mobile device or PC with internet access)
Mobile compatible AED Inspection Tool with Continual 24/7 AED Maintenance Log Redundancy & Backup (proves AED was maintained if there is an incident involving use and someone does not survive; legal protection)
State/Local AED Owner Civil Liability Immunity Law Compliance & AED Program Medical Director Oversight, as needed
Equipment Recall Advice, Guidance and Warranty Servicing
Free AED Post-Event Review Technical Support & Incident Assistance
Free replacement pads/battery after any AED use event
Phone Technical Support or Online Technical Support
Contact us and mention this blog post and we’ll make sure you get a free site assessment and Site Administrator Toolkit information.
Let Think Safe provide you more information on this unique, effective solutions integrator approach to workplace emergency preparedness, AED programs, or first aid programs. Please fill out the form below,email us or call us at 319-377-5125.
If you witness someone experiencing cardiac arrest first call 9-1-1 then administer CPR.
The current accepted method for untrained rescuers is “Hands Only CPR”, which involves 100 compressions per minute with no breaths. If you administer chest compressions to the beat of the Bee Gees’ “Stayin’ Alive” or Queen’s “Another One Bites the Dust” you will achieve that rate. You should continue to do chest compressions until help arrives or the victim wakes up. It’s normal to feel pops and snaps when you first begin chest compressions, but don’t stop. You’re not going to make the victim any worse.
Thanks to the Chattanooga Fire Department for teaching us all a valuable lesson on the importance of CPR and dancing!
To learn more about online or in person CPR training fill out the form below.
In April 2012, Tracy Hjelle’s world turned upside down. The 42 year old coaches women’s softball for Luther college. One morning, the team was boarding a bus to head to Wisconsin when Tracy unexpectedly fell to the ground. Head Trainer Kris Agena, catcher Kelsey Kittleson, and outfielder Shari Huber, were quick to perform CPR. A nearby AED at the college was brought over and recovered Tracy’s heart back to a normal rhythm. Tracy miraculously survived and became diagnosed with spontaneous coronary artery dissection (SCAD).
Tracy Hjelle with her husband John
Tracy is a lucky survivor because she got the help she needed within minutes. The three women who performed CPR right away, increased Tracy’s chances of surviving immensely. Having the AED on campus gave Tracy the help she needed before waiting crucial minutes for Emergency Responders to arrive.
Imagine getting the news that one of your family members suffered from SCAD or sudden cardiac arrest. Think Safe’s very own President and CEO, Paula Wickham, is actually Tracy Hjelle’s cousin. Tracy is living proof that a sudden heart attack can happen to anyone!
Tracy’s story proves that people should be educated and trained in CPR. Along with that, making sure AEDs are located in public venues. People must be prepared because when an unexpected surprise like Tracy’s occurs, they need to be ready.
While the month of October may be ending, the nation’s leading silent killer will remain standing. Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) kills 1,000 people PER DAY in the United States alone. That is approximately 1 life every minute.
When an organization reviews their Emergency Response Plan (ERP) they should consider addressing life-threatening emergencies that are likely to occur at their facility.SCA should be a topic that is covered during review of the organization ERP if the local EMS or first responder teams can not get to the VICTIM (from time of their collapse, not from time of the 9-1-1 call) in well under 4-6 minutes. With national averages for EMS response being 8-10 minutes in urban areas and higher than that in rural areas; it is highly likely that almost any organization should consider the implementation of an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) program to offset the risk of death occurring from any SCA event at their facility.
Here are some key facts on why any workplace or organization where people pass through, congregate, and work should consider AEDs.
1) Many victims of SCA did not know they were at risk, and could not recognize warning signs, if any had been present. In fact, two-thirds of SCA deaths occur without any prior indications of heart disease. Anyone can experience sudden cardiac arrest, including healthy infants, high school athletes, and healthy athletes or people in their 30s and 40s who have no sign of heart disease. There are certain populations that have been shown to be at higher risk but SCA is a silent and deadly killer that is non-discriminatory in that it will take the life of any age, any rage or any gender of person. This fact is vital because the victim can not be equipped to properly save their life if they do not know they have a heart condition.
2) CPR alone is not enough. Ninety-five percent of victims of SCA die because they do not receive medical attention in time. Currently, defibrillation delivered within the first 6 minutes of an SCA accounts for the 5 percent survival statistics. Survival can be as high as 90 percent if treatment is initiated within the first 4–6 minutes after SCA. The rate decreases by about 10 percent each minute longer. Those who receive a life-saving shock from an Automatic External Defibrillator (AED) have a good long-term outlook.
3) There are Good Samaritan Laws to protect users of AEDs and organizations like Think Safe can provide you a turnkey AED Acquirer/Owner package that puts the right AED program in place at your facility to protect you from any liability risks. With the purchase of any equipment at your facility, the costs and risks of keeping it maintained have to be considered. That should not be any different with the purchase of an AED. However, easy to use cloud based SAAS self-maintenance low-cost tracking solutions such as www.firstvoicemanager.com exist to ensure that someone at your facility does the AED check regularly and has a readily available servicing log with the click of a mouse.
SUDDEN CARDIAC ARREST is the #1 killer in the US annually and an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) is the difference between life and death for these victims. Every minute that goes by without using an AED results in a 10% less chance of survival!
You simply can’t wait for EMS or First Responder community teams to arrive! National average EMS response is 8-10 minutes in urban areas.
OSHA highly recommends these devices in the workplace and there are many industry-specific, federal, state and local mandates for AEDs due to the death toll of Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA). But, even if you are not mandated — you should consider purchasing one of these devices. They take survival rates from SCA from 3-7% to over 65%! PLUS, if you can use a cell phone – YOU CAN USE AN AED!
So, are there any drawbacks to owning an AED? Yes, if you do not maintain them or implement them according to your applicable AED acquirer laws in your city/county/state. Think Safe knows these laws and is known for providing the legal protection and solutions our clients and dealers need.
Think Safe, in an effort to help our customers and dealers understand the legalities of defibrillator ownership, is sponsoring a webinar series on AED Programs: Avoiding Liability.
The webinar runs 3 times per day in Marchwith speakers Paula Wickham or Greg Stebral, industry experts, providing key tips and resource materials for existing AED programs or those interested in selling AEDs or purchasing AEDs for their facility or workplace.
There is no fee. There is no software to download.You just need an internet connection (no phone). All you have to do is go to:
Once you fill out the form (we DO NOT SELL your information) you will be provided a screen that shows open webinars and you can click on and select any times / dates with open seats.
There are many dates/times to pick from this month- we know how hard it is to push a webinar into your busy schedule but…. you’ll find value from this webinar and we look forward to seeing you online.
Business AED Package
If you have any questions or want to schedule a specific time for this webinar please contact Paula Wickham at firstname.lastname@example.org or call our offices and ask for Paula or Greg, 319-377-5125. Making Minutes Matter!
If you’d like us to contact you, please complete the following form. We are happy to assist you!
With the 2010 Emergency Cardiovascular Care (ECC) and American Heart Association (AHA) Guidelines Updates there comes new published science on the use of AEDs on infants and children.
People who are familiar with AEDs and defibrillators know that both adult and pediatric pads had to be considered pre-2010 AHA science updates[separate pads are required to allow the AED to administer different shock dosage to the heart, lower for pediatric events of course]. Having both pads available creates extra costs as both have an expiry date and need replacement after 2 years usually. We often get asked, ” Do we really need pediatric pads?”
Former science [pre-2010 and post-2005] suggested not to use AEDs on infants and to use pediatric pads on children under 8 years of age or under 55 pounds. Evidence of this from prior blogs or internet posts includes: http://www.wikihow.com/Use-a-Defibrillator, which contains old outdated information summarized below.
OLD INFORMATION: Do not put adult pads on a pediatric patient and vice versa! Pediatric pads are used on children who are ages 12 and under. [this is pre-2005 information]
2010 (New): For attempted defibrillation of children 1 to 8
years of age with an AED, the rescuer should use a pediatric
dose-attenuator system if one is available. If the rescuer
provides CPR to a child in cardiac arrest and does not have an
AED with a pediatric dose-attenuator system, the rescuer should
use a standard AED. For infants (<1 year of age), a manual
defibrillator is preferred. If a manual defibrillator is not available,
an AED with pediatric dose attenuation is desirable. If neither is
available, an AED without a dose attenuator may be used.
2005 (Old): For children 1 to 8 years of age, the rescuer
should use a pediatric dose-attenuator system if one is
available. If the rescuer provides CPR to a child in cardiac
arrest and does not have an AED with a pediatric attenuator
system, the rescuer should use a standard AED. There are
insufficient data to make a recommendation for or against the
use of AEDs for infants <1 year of age.
Why: The lowest energy dose for effective defibrillation in
infants and children is not known. The upper limit for safe
defibrillation is also not known, but doses >4 J/kg (as high
as 9 J/kg) have effectively defibrillated children and animal
models of pediatric arrest with no significant adverse effects.
Automated external defibrillators with relatively high-energy
doses have been used successfully in infants in cardiac arrest
with no clear adverse effects.
If you are a school or camp or childcare provider, what does this mean? Until new science [in 2013 or after] is released you should consider looking at your current AED program. Do you have pediatric pads currently? Those will expire in 2 years or less – should you replace them? In these economic times, there are many non-profits and schools who will not have adequate budgetary capacity and it may be a topic of consideration. Due to the new science, strong consideration can be given to this — IF you can accommodate for proper AED use communication to responders or the public who would use the device with ADULT PADS on a child under 8 years or 55 pounds.
How do you accommodate? A simple solution: a sticker/decal set that can be attached to your AED case and responder supplies to remind responders on WHAT TO DO for pediatric events. The set includes directions on where to find illustrations with 2010 instructions and how to apply the ADULT pads (complete with pictures) anterior [front] and posterior [back] for pediatric events and why. Call 888-473-1777 for more technical information on this solution.
The reason for anterior and posterior placement, simply put, is to allow the pads to shock the heart WITHOUT the pads touching – the surface area of a pediatric victim’s chest is not large enough usually to allow normal ADULT pad placement.
Simple directions and illustrations and quick references on the AED, AED instruction manual or guides, AED policy and AED protocols and CPR/AED poster you keep at your facility all will help with communication of this simple change for pediatric vs. adult use.
The ONLY exception are customers who have Philips FRx (the ONLY model to allow switching of shock level with an Infant/Child Key inserted into the AED while using the SAME SET OF PADS). Philips FRx models offer a wonderful solution for facilities that want to be able to accommodate pediatric or adult situations without a large CONSUMABLE cost from 2 yr disposable pads for each event. The FRx is a more expensive model with a higher purchase price – however, IF you know you are going to be primarily using the device on pediatric patients, this model would be a leading device to consider.
We are here to help! First Voice can provide a sticker/decal/ template set to easily show on your AED and responder supplies WHAT TO DO for pediatric events. The set includes directions on where to find illustrations with 2010 instructions and how to apply the ADULT pads (complete with pictures) anterior [front] and posterior [back] for pediatric events and why. Call 888-473-1777 or contact your dealer for First Voice products for more information – Part number PED-DECAL01.Please provide your AED brand so we can make sure to ship the right decal set.
To find out how you can get your AED Pediatric Decal set, fill out the form below!
Think Safe’s First Voice EID is ready for CPR/First Aid upgrades to be sent to you, our dealers and customers!
Part No. DC01: The $29 upgrade is sent in a datacard and can be easily inserted/changed by following the user instructions sent with the upgrade.
Dealers please contact us for further information on how to provide your customers easy upgrades (email:email@example.com).
The First Voice EID is the only Emergency Instruction Device / Talking First Aid Book / First Aid Calculator on the market for business use, containing all first aid & CPR AHA manual current protocols. The device is easy to upgrade through an accessible dataport on the back of the device as first aid & CPR protocols do change every 3-5 years through scientific studies and advances in first aid / CPR science.
2010 updates implemented in 2011 on the EID protocols include: CPR updates to include compression depth & C-A-B changes for trained rescuers and hands only CPR for untrained rescuers, education & recognition of gasping vs. normal breathing, and advised AED use for infants. First Aid updates include additional heat stroke advice, jellyfish sting updated care, clarification on aspirin use for heart attack symptoms, both US and Canadian Poison Control contact information, bleeding wound care updates (elevation, pressure points, tourniquet, compression bandage use), additional information on when to suspect head, neck or spinal injuries, and snakebite first aid care updates.
There are 5 potential budget items that affect your AED program. Note that any non-compliance, where necessary, leads to a break down in your AED program and does open you to potential for legalities. Once you have an AED program, remember to budget for these items where applicable!
1) Electrode Pads – The majority of the AED models on the market have a 2 year electrode pad life. The date of the expiration is clearly marked on the pad package, an example is shown on this posting for the Philips FRx Rugged AED. Some AED models do have 3.5 yr expiry dates up to 5 yr expiry dates, however. Dates vary due to packaging mechanisms but be sure to follow manufacturer guidelines and expiration dates provided. The electrode pads will dry out and prevent proper AED functioning/use if they are not replaced as needed. Pads range in price from $35-$120, depending on make and model owned.
2) Batteries – The majority of the AED models on the market have a 3-5 year warranty and lifespan. The date of the expiration is also clearly marked on the battery. Various models will warranty the devices for xx years AFTER initial install so be sure to clearly mark your records on WHEN you install the battery for these models. Also, the HeartSine Samaritan and Physio Conrol / Medtronic CR Plus Lifepak or Lifepak Express models have a combo pack you purchase with battery/pads being replaced simultaneously. Defibtech / Cintas does sell a model that has a suggested annual replacement of an off-shelf 9V battery (this ensures their AED performs proper self-testing). AED batteries range in price from $75-$400, depending on make and model owned.
3) Training – AED acquirer state laws many times dictate that you have to ensure expected users are trained in American Heart or Red Cross or equal CPR & AED certified courses (American Safety & Health Institute, Medic First, Health & Safety Institute, Emergency Care & Safety Institute, American Health Association, etc). These certifications range depending on which training org you use but every 1-2 years the certification expires and needs to be renewed. Courses can be obtained locally at Red Cross locations or through the American Heart Association network but also there are over 100,000 instructor throughout the US alone and there are local training centers that can provide a competitive price for CPR & AED, First Aid, and Bloodborne Pathogen or Universal Precautions plus other more advanced or supplemental add-on training classes. Various online solutions are also available. Think Safe has a listing of US training centers and online solutions; contact us at or firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to contact a local trainer in your area.
4) Program Manager Software / Database – AED acquirer state laws many times also dictate that the AED has to be maintained to manufacturer and industry standards. This standard generally a 30 day check. Many companies have their own database solution for ensuring equipment is checked regularly and records of these checks are kept on file (big companies). If you do not, there are online solutions that are inexpensive but key in helping to not only auto-notify your AEDs are checked to standards but also the log and records of all AEDs are filed and backed up regularly for legal protection. A nice comprehensive UNLIMITED user solution at $25-$50/location (customer) can be seen here, showing it’s full capabilities: http://www.firstvoice.us/FirstVoiceAEDManagerVideo/tabid/751/Default.aspx
5) Medical Oversight – AED acquirer state laws in approximately 20 states requires a licensed physician or “certified healthcare provider” to oversee the AED program. This is NOT an Rx! Proper Medical Oversight includes sign-off by the appropriate license owner referred to in that state law on: AED/CPR training of the organization (who is trained, how often, what they are trained on); AED placement and markings; AED communication; AED policy; AED maintenance & upkeep procedures. Contact Think Safe at if you are not sure if your state requires medical oversight. Medical Oversight costs anywhere from $75/AED to $350/AED or some companies chose to hire medical direction and pay a retainer annually. Think Safe has a national network of medical directors and can provide a quote for efficient medical oversight for your organization, charging you for locations ONLY where mandates require it. In some cases, we can connect you with a local FREE source for medical oversight. Call for more details. AED distributors/dealers are encouraged to call as well.
There are several very good points made in this article.
Of note is that these lifesaving devices can be purchased for $1000 or under and AED packages (cabinet, etc) are $1000 to $1500. And, companies and facilities should want to purchase and maintain the devices under their own lead, not based upon being MANDATED to buy.
I know of several MANDATED customers (schools, fitness clubs, gyms, etc) where they – without hand holding and an easy database solution that is inexpensive – DID NOT hold up their end of the bargain historically due to the absence of an AED program Champion. Pads expire, Batteries expire, devices go unchecked and management is crossing their fingers [and toes] that the device works when it is needed at their location (if it is even remembered to be used).
The key is that these devices save lives, they should not be mandated, they should be affordable and easy to maintain. THEY SAVE LIVES and let’s not forget that Sudden Cardiac Arrest is the biggest killer annually in the U.S.
How can you fund an AED? There are grants – email us for a copy of “THE FOUNDATION OF FUNDING AEDS” – FREE, COMPLIMENTARY and no strings attached!
EMAIL: email@example.com (subject – COPY OF FOUNDATION OF FUNDING AEDS)
How can you make sure the AED is constantly in compliance and checked regularly for under $25 – 50/yr at your location? Check out the following link; then contact us at 888-473-1777 or complete the form below and we will be happy to get in touch with you!
It seems that the answer to placing the devices are not mandates but rather, proper funding and program solutions for the long term! We can always be reached at as well at the contact info below, and we are happy to give you our technical insights into accessible funding sources and cost reductions, where applicable!
Making Minutes Matter
Think Safe Blog /firstname.lastname@example.org (888.473.1777)