AEDs in the Office – Workplace Emergencies
AED’s are becoming a more common occurrence in all types of locations. It is now more widely known that with the assistance of an AED, the chances of survival greatly increase. Although it is expected that larger locations (such as malls, airports, etc.) will have and AED available, it should be available in smaller locations as well! An office is a place that should be mandatory to have an AED. Workplace emergencies do occur, and having that AED can save a person’s life. Office buildings are less accessible than homes or one-level buildings so it is extra important to have life saving devices on hand to give the emergency crews more time to respond. Here are some things you need to know about having an AED in the office!
How Many AEDs are Needed in an Office
If your office building has an AED, that is step in the right direction. But does every floor have access to one? The time it takes for an AED to be delivered between floors could greatly reduce a person’s chance at life. Even if they do survive, the longer a person is deprived of oxygen, the more permanent damage the person will incur. Having an AED present on every office floor is vital to survival.
Make AED’s Accessible
When finding a spot to place your AED, it is important to make sure it is in an easy accessible spot. The office can be filled with obstacles (desks, chairs, or even cubicle walls). Because an AED is not used often, some may consider getting it out of the way. When it is not accessible during in emergencies, staff will need to spend valuable time locating the AED and running it back to the victim – and in a situation where every second counts, this search could cost a life. Put your AED (and accessories) in a location that can be seen by everyone and has a clear path. Ensure it is not behind lock and key. If things get in the way, chance of survival will decrease exponentially. Save those seconds of oxygen deprivation and place the AED in a spot where people can find it quickly. An alarmed AED cabinet with a sign is your best option.
Staff First Aid and AED Training
Do the individuals on your floor know how to use an AED? Although every AED comes with an automated voice walkthrough, having the confidence to use one is another thing. When people are confident they know what they are doing and they are more likely to step in and take action. Wherever your AED is located in your office, be sure that the staff are trained properly on its use. It is also beneficial to train all staff in first aid basics so they are prepared for anything. They could be the ones to jump in and save your life!
Update Your AED
Because AED’s are electronic and use batteries, they will need to be replaced/recharged. The Philips OnSite Defibrillator uses a disposable, lithium manganese dioxide, long-life battery with a five-year shelf life plus a (typical) four-year installed life. A spare battery should also be stored with the defibrillator. If the AED is not being used (which is a good thing of course!), it will need to be checked on and maintained. This will ensure that when it does need to be used it is ready to go. Philips AED’s make a chirping noise to indicate that it needs maintenance (whether it be to alert you about expired pads or batteries, or something more serious). Be sure your AED is ready to go in case your office should experience an emergency!
If you have an influence in building-related matters, consider vouching for an AED on every level (you’ll get a $100 referral fee for each defib purchased). It will make workers feel safe and prepared if an emergency should ever occur! Looking to purchase an AED for your workplace? Check out our website to purchase yours (we recommend the ‘Heartstart Onsite Defibrillator’ with a spare set of pads for office environments)!