What is an AED? (No they aren't C3PO's cousin!)

Unless you are wrapped up cosy and locked away tight in a cave somewhere, and quite frankly we wouldn't blame you, you will have more than likely seen these 3 letters popping up everywhere... AED. But what are they and why do they matter?

What are AED's

AED stands for Automated External Defibrillation. AED's are small boxes which can be found in a large number of areas. You may have seen them at the supermarket, library, at the swimming pool or even in your office. They are popping up everywhere which is great news!

Look out for the signs....

Why are AED's useful?

AED's are life saving devices. They give the user the ability to administer a shock of electricity to someone suffering from a Cardiac Arrest, which in turn restores the heart's normal rhythm.

They are simple to use, meaning you do not need to have any training to use them. Of course you are more than welcome to attend training sessions should you wish and many people within communities do, to give them the confidence in the event of ever needing to use one.

This chain of survival shows you how an AED fits into first aid and saving lives.

Sudden Cardiac Arrest is unpredictable, it strikes without warning, killing 250 people a day in the UK.

How will i know what to do?

All AED's use voice prompts to help guide you through the process. They are all different though and some provide the basic information, whilst some are more in-deph. There are visual prompts and these should be used as well.

AED's come with a number of accessories such as electrode pads and face shields. The electrode pads are placed on to the body of the casualty and the face shield is for infection control purposes during CPR.

*This video does use 112 as the emergency number which you can use as well as 999.

Do you know where you nearest AED is?

You may have seen AED cabinets out and about on your travels but it is always good to have an idea of where they are. There are a few website which track AED's positions:

http://www.heartsafe.org.uk

http://www.defibtracker.co.uk

http://defibfinder.org/find-your-nearest-aed/

If you would like more information on AED courses in Norfolk then take a look at our AED course page.

From January 2017, AED training will be added to all First Aid at Work and Emergency First Aid at Work courses as standard.

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