Public Access Defibrillators


About the size of a laptop computer, an AED typically consist of a main unit that provides controls and instructions, and detachable electrodes that the rescuer puts on the victim’s body. The latest AEDs are remarkably simple to use. They automatically detect what treatment is appropriate for the victim, and give rescuers instructions for administering treatment (usually via audio prompts).

Sudden Cardiac Arrest:

Sudden cardiac arrest (SCA), commonly known as massive heart attack in lay terms, kills more than 35,000 Canadians each year, making it the leading cause of unexpected death in Canada. Breast cancer, stroke and AIDS claim fewer victims combined.

Survival Rates:

Unfortunately, because of numerous factors including geographic or resource limitations the average response times for paramedic services can exceed the window of opportunity in which a person may be effectively resuscitated. For every 1 minute delay, the victim has a 10% less chance of survival. The survival rate outside a hospital from CPR alone has been disappointingly low, often less than 4%.

Cardiac Defibrillation:

In the last few years, innovative changes both in health care philosophy and technology has made the Act of “cardiac defibrillation” (shocking the heart) much more feasible even in public areas. Through the introduction of Automatic External Defibrillation (AED) or “Public Access Defibrillation” (PAD) programs we can now have the necessary equipment at most public venues, work sites, etc.. Any individual who can provide CPR can easily be instructed in the use of an Automatic External Defibrillator (AED), which is the life saving device needed to shock the heart back to its normal rhythm (defibrillation).

PADs in the “Chain of Survival”

We are working to strengthen the “Chain of Survival” in the community. Together with the existing Emergency Medical Services response system, trained citizens can improve cardiac arrest survival.

When a heart stops beating, for whatever reason, early intervention can often get it going again and save a life. The following four links, referred to as “The Chain of Survival” are critical to ensuring the survival of an individual who experiences cardiac arrest.

Early Recognition and Access to 911: Recognition of the signs and symptoms of an impending cardiac arrest and calling 9-1-1.

Early CPR: Performing CPR keeps vital organs alive until medical help is available.

Early Defibrillation: Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) that deliver an electric shock in order to restart a fibrillating heart back to a normal rhythm.

Early Advanced Life Support: Paramedics on our ambulance service.

Each link in the chain depends on the successful completion of the previous link.

AEDs are very important to the chain of survival. With AEDs on your site, you are significantly increasing survival rates for anyone who suffers a cardiac arrest. When your staff or volunteers are trained in AED use, they are actually trained to complete the first three of the four links in the chain of survival. Training includes recognition of the signs of a heart trouble, (Link 1), CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) (Link 2) and, of course, automated external defibrillation (Link 3).

For more information, Contact Us.