Isn’t technology wonderful? Computers have been adapted to almost every part of our lives, in the medical industry, they are indispensable now. And until recently, first aid was limited to mouth-to-mouth resuscitation and CPR when a victim’s heart stopped and they had stopped breathing. I attended first aid classes in College and back home in New Mexico and have been certified as a YMCA lifeguard.
Now, technology brings even more life saving power into the hands of the person that is very first on the scene…the one rendering the first aid. Though they are a little expensive, there are now defibrillation machines that can be included in the first aid kits and cabinets. Don’t get me wrong, at around $1,200 for a low end unit, it is a little steep for the average home owner. But some of the better “business” or Church” models only cost a few hundred more, ($2,400 – $2,900) which makes them very affordable for neighborhood churches and community centers to have around.
Most of the AEDs, (Automated External Defibrillator,) will automatically detect if the patient needs the “shock.” Many will also detect if the pads are applied properly on the patient. If you have not been trained for use one of these machines, and the machine does not have photo instructions on placing the pads, DO NOT USE IT! More injury could be realized. Use the “old fashioned” method of mouth-to-mouth and CPR. If you don’t know how to do that yet, click on this link. Even if you are at work, and the boss catches you, tell him you are attending a “Safety Class.” I bet he will understand.
If the machine has been placed correctly, and it detects that the patient needs the treatment, it will prompt you to press a “shock” button. DO NOT PRESS THE BUTTON IMMEDIATEY! Take a close look around you to make sure there isn’t anyone touching the patient, also make sure the patient isn’t lying in a puddle of water, or some other liquid. The patient must be on a dry surface, and have no one touching him, or her, then you can press the “shock” button. The machine will then give the patient the jolt it believes necessary for the patient.
Too Bad They Aren’t Free…
But the price is not out of reason for a neighborhood community center or church. All of the kits I looked at while researching this article included stickers to let people know there’s a defibrillator on the premises available for emergency use, and most times there will be a registered, certified, or trained person around to use it.