Where's the AED

From past research we know having publicly-available AEDs in a community doubles survival rates for victims of cardiac arrest. But a recent study of AED location found AEDs in one metropolitan area were not well identified and hard to find. It also questions whether the AEDs were put in places where people are most likely to suffer cardiac arrests.

The study of public access defibrillators by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania compared the location of 3,483 cardiac arrests with that of public AEDs in Philadelphia County. They found just seven percent of cardiac arrests occurred within a 200-foot radius of an AED (a two-minute walk, roundtrip) and 21 percent of cardiac arrests occurred within 600 feet (a six-minute walk) of an AED.

These findings may be important because permanent brain damage begins at 4 to 6 minutes after the heart stops beating and survival rates go down significantly after this time. AEDs are more likely to be effective when then are in close proximity to where cardiac emergencies occur. Read more (external website)