Iridia Out on the Hunt

We’re now half way through the Global Corporate Challenge (two months left to go!), and the three Iridia teams (Blue Steel, Red Striding Hoods and Gold Karats) are still going strong.

The GCC is an online program that engages people in getting more active. The goal is for every participant to work up to 10,000 steps a day – learn more and check out our first GCC blog.

As of July 25th, we have a combined step count of 21,353,158 – or the equivalent of walking around the world .34 times. To honour everyone’s hard work and dedication we decided to host a “mid-point” celebration.

GCC Report

The Mid-Point Celebration

The idea was to put together a GCC themed event that would be loads of fun, incorporate our values, and of course, be “step heavy.” The result – an Iridia scavenger hunt to celebrate our accomplishments to date.

After hammering out the details, we created five new teams, each represented by a member from our three GCC teams. The event would be timed (1 hour or about 4.5k). Prizes would be handed out for teams accumulating the most points. And of course we had to create a set of rules to follow – because a scavenger hunt without rules can only lead to one thing: chaos.

The Rules

  • The event starts and ends at the Iridia office
  • Teams must leave and return together, and complete all the items on their clue sheets to be eligible for awards
  • All participants must note their start and end step counts
  • Teams must bring a camera for “evidence”
  • All teams will have the option of completing additional activities for bonus points
  • Teams taking more than 60 minutes to return will forfeit 50% of any bonus points earned

Available Awards

  • Greatest distance from our office
  • Reach the highest floor of a building
  • Collect the most business cards
  • Most AEDs found
  • Most people on a bicycle
  • Most Bonus Points Earned
  • Best Dressed Team
  • Highest Step Rate
  • Best Iridia Values Photo Contribution (snap a photo of anything, anyone or anywhere that reflects Iridia’s values)
  • Greatest Distance From Office

The Gallery

The Results

  • First Team Home – Nancy, Nick C and Beverly
  • Highest Step Average – Allan, Shannon and Steve, a rate of 340 steps per minute
  • Greatest Distance From the Office – Vern, Lexi and Diana, with 17 513 steps
  • Most Bonus Points Earned – Tom, Janine and Nick K, with 39 points earned from an incredible 30 business cards collected and an impressive 15 storey adventure!
  • Best Dressed Team – Allan, Shannon and Steve
  • Best Iridia Core Values Photo – Melissa, Julie and Derek, who snapped images of all 8 values

Combined Stats

  • Total distance covered by all teams – 49km
  • Average distance covered – 5103 steps, or over 3km per person
  • AEDs spotted in the wild – 3
  • Most people on a bike – 5
  • Total business cards collected – 106

With the event wrapped up – it’s fair to say the scavenger hunt was a huge success; we had many laughs, lots of great memories and of course we all surpassed the GCC 10,000 steps-per-day goal!  

 

What is an Automated External Defibrillator?

Iridia pioneered the first public-access Automated External Defibrillator (AED) program in British Columbia and we have remained passionate about AEDs. Since our start in 1998, we have become a leading distributor of AEDs and have placed AEDs in almost all places imaginable.

What are Automated Defibrillators and why are they so important?

Automated External Defibrillators

An AED is a portable device that delivers an electric shock to the heart. This shock can stop an irregular heart rhythm due to sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) and restore a normal rhythm. SCA is a condition in which the heart suddenly and unexpectedly stops beating. If this happens, blood stops flowing to the brain and other vital organs.

Up to 40,000 cardiac arrests occur each year in Canada alone. Without rapid treatment, most of these cardiac arrests will result in death. After more than 12 minutes of an irregular rhythm, the survival rate from cardiac arrest is less than 5%. On average, every 1 minute delay in defibrillation will reduce survival rates by 7% to 10%. However, the combined use of CPR and an AED may increase the rate of survival to 75% or more.

Cardiac Arrest Survival Rates

Thankfully the complicated and cumbersome defibrillators of the past are gone. Today, defibrillators used in public places and in the home are automated, portable and easy to use. They are no longer limited to the emergency room. AED advances have made it possible for more people to respond to a medical emergency where defibrillation is required.

How does an AED work?

A built-in computer analyses the victim’s heart rhythm through two electrode pads. The computer then calculates whether defibrillation is needed. If it is, a recorded voice tells the rescuer to administer a shock. This shock stuns the heart and stops all activity and gives the heart a chance to resume beating effectively. Instructions will guide the user through the process.

Who can use an AED?

AEDs are designed to help people with minimal training use them safely in tense, emergency situations. They have numerous built-in safeguards and are designed to deliver a shock only if necessary.

Where should AEDs be placed?

All first-responders, including paramedics, law enforcement, fire rescue personnel should have access to an AED. 

Defib Place Icons

Additionally, AEDs should be placed in public areas such as sports arenas, golf courses, gated communities, airports, office complexes, doctors’ offices and any other public or private place where large numbers of people gather. Learn more about Why You Need Access to a Defibrillator.

If you need Tools to Save Lives, visit us at www.iridiamedical.com and learn about our:

  • industry-leading AED units
  • AED training for lay rescuers and professionals
  • unique medical direction packages
  • provincial leading AED programs

 

MERS and H7N9 Infectious Disease Update

It’s been a few weeks since we’ve released an emerging infectious disease update, and there have been several developments since our last post.  In general, the impact of both viruses has been less severe than expected; this might be due to the extensive precautions that were taken at the outset of the initial outbreaks.

MERS and A(H7N9) infections have stalled; however the threat of the viruses still persists and the World Health Organization is predicting both strains might regain momentum as we move towards flu season.

H7N9 and MERS Virus

MERS

Globally, since September 2012, there have been a total of 81 laboratory-confirmed cases of infection with MERS; as of July 12, 2013, 45 people have died from the virus.

The MERs virus is mainly active in the Middle East, but has been identified in 8 countries.  The Public Health Agency of Canada recently updated their disease reports that the risk to Canadians is low; however, it is still not yet known how people become infected with the MERs virus.  Canadian federal and provincial laboratories have been testing specimens and there are currently no cases in Canada to report.

A(H7N9)

New A(H7N9) infections remain low.  To date, there have been a total of 133 laboratory-confirmed cases, including 43 deaths.

There is still no evidence of sustained human-to-human transmission of the virus.  However, the World Health Organization reports that until the source of the infection has been identified and controlled, that there will likely be more infections.

There are still no cases of the infection in Canada and this particular strain has not been detected in birds in Canada. The risk to Canadians remains low.

Key Alerts

  • July 4 – WHO issues new A(H7N9) assessments and guidance – available here
  • July 11 – The WHO releases an update on the MERS virus – available here

Summary, Risks, and Recommendations

In short, MERS and A(H7N9) remain a threat because doctors and scientists know very little about the two diseases and how they spread.  The Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) continues to work with its national and international partners, including the WHO, to monitor and share information.  The PHAC continues to track the spread of flu illness in Canada.  Two of the agency’s personnel are currently partaking in the WHO’s working group of technical experts to review different aspects of the MERs and A(H7N9) outbreak events.

Further, research is being conducted in the agency’s national microbiology lab (NML) to determine antibodies that react against the viruses to better determine when someone is infected.  The NML is also developing and testing several vaccines to determine if they provide protection against the viruses.

Canadian health officials remind Canadians that there is very little risk of catching either virus in Canada.

No restrictions have been placed on trade or travel.

Statistics

  • Total A(H7N9) confirmed cases: 133
  • Total A(H7N9) fatalities: 43
  • Total MERS confirmed cases: 81
  • Total MERS fatalities: 45

Additional Information

Thank you for checking our weekly summary, please check back next week for another update. For more information, please visit http://www.bccdc.ca/default.htm

 

Iridia Supporting the Teaching of CPR and AED Skills to Terrace and Kitimat Youth

Furthering our partnership with the ACT Foundation, Iridia recently helped to bring CPR and Automated External Defibrillator (AED) training to Caledonia Senior Secondary School in Terrace and Mount Elizabeth Middle/Secondary School in Kitimat.  In total, seven teachers across the two schools attended the teacher-training workshop which was held in Terrace on 25 June, 2013.

The workshop was delivered by BCAS’ paramedic, Gil Kurtz, who was supported by the Deputy Chief of the Kitimat Fire Department, Pete Bizarro.  Both gentleman generously volunteered their time to teach the workshop.  Iridia’s support comprised the donation of equipment – including AED training units and AEDs – along with the provision of funding for the AED mannequins and program resources. 

As a result of this teacher-training, approximately 350 students will be trained annually by their teachers to use these life-saving skills.  Janine Dethlefs from Iridia was also in attendance to speak to the teachers about the work that Iridia does and the importance of having as many people as possible trained in CPR and AED use.

 

CPR Training

Click to watch the segment from CFTK TV

Not that this importance isn’t already understood by the teachers and students at Caledonia Senior Secondary School.  A few years ago, a life was saved by a student from Caledonia when a gentleman in Walmart suffered a sudden cardiac arrest.  With no other adult close by who was able to respond, the student acted quickly, engaging his CPR skills and knowledge. Fortunately, the outcome was a happy one and shows that these skills, once learned, can be invaluable.

This is just one example of how sudden cardiac arrest can occur anywhere, at any time.  With eight in 10 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests occurring at home or in public places, empowering youth with CPR training as part of their high school education will help increase citizen CPR response rates over the long term.

Check out the following link for more information about the ACT Foundation.

http://www.actfoundation.ca/index2.cfm