California school district aims to equip schools with AEDs
The Poway Unified School District in San Diego has announced plans to put automated external defibrillators (AEDs) in all 37 school buildings. The plan received a “go ahead” from the district’s board of trustees and their final approval is expected in August. See California AED legislation.
An AED article in the North County Times reported that part of the reason for implementing the plan is to protect students against sports-related cardiac emergencies, including sudden cardiac arrest and commotio cordis.
“In children, that tends to be where you see the most heart condition- or heart attack-related deaths,” Steve Salvati, director of risk management for the school district, told the paper.
The paper reported that the district already has 12 defibrillators, including two at high school swimming pools. The AED program recently received donations of three AEDs, one from the family of a 14-year-old who suffered a heart attack outside a junior high school. While the boy received emergency medical treatment, he was not given a shock from an AED until 23 minutes after the heart attack occurred, and later died.
San Diego Project Heart Beat will handle AED training for the school district and coordinate maintenance of the devices. Maureen O’Connor, program manager for Project Heart Beat, told the paper that the non-profit has placed more than 5,500 AEDs in San Diego County. To date, these defibrillators have helped save at least 72 people. That is, 72 families.
Contact Certified AED Specialist Enrique Christopherson for details.