Iridia and London Drugs: Our First in Store Event for Heart Month

London Drugs AED CPR EventAs you may know, the month of February was Heart Month. Heart Month is an initiative from the Heart and Stroke Association focused on raising awareness for issues relating to the heart. This month is important to us and we wanted to find a unique way to raise awareness for Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA). London Drugs  has been a long-term partner of ours and we came together to show people how easy it is to save a life if someone is suffering an SCA.

Do You Have a Minute to Save a Life?

The premise of our event was to focus on how simple it was to use a defibrillator and the importance of practicing CPR to ensure it is correctly applied. On February 27th, we set up a booth at the front of the Park Royal London Drugs location, in order to engage with shoppers. The booth featured the Chain of Survival, a process commonly used to describe the steps to take when someone suffers a SCA.

Chain of Survival 2015

The Chain of Survival features four steps important in saving a life. Early Access focuses on ensuring that emergency services are called immediately after the situation is witnessed. Following this, CPR must be applied, Early CPR is critical to increasing survival rates. During the event, we had the Ambu Smartman on site to demonstrate to people that high quality CPR was very important to saving someone’s life. We had many people try out the Smartman, with some scores as high as 80%!

The next step in the chain is Early Defibrillation, for this, we had a training Automated External Defibrillator with us and encouraged individuals to apply the AED only following the instructions. Many people found the AED to be easy to use and felt assured knowing it guides them through the entire process. Finally once you’ve applied the AED, emergency medical services will be there. The final step, Early Advanced Care ensures that professional assistance is on location as soon as possible.

A Successful Event at London Drugs

We spent about 4 hours at the booth in London Drugs and provided guidance to around 30-40 individuals. Everyone had different questions, most of which were related to how to provide effective CPR and AED use. We had a great time working together with London Drugs to make the event happen. The event was a great success and we look forward to hosting other activities in the future.

 

Do You Have a Minute to Save a Life?

If you had one minute to learn how to save someone’s life, would you take that opportunity? 

Iridia is excited to announce that we’re teaming up with London Drugs to deliver an in-store “Save a Life” awareness campaign at London Drugs West Vancouver. At the event, participants will be able to test their CPR skills and learn how to correctly apply an Automated External Defibrillator (AED). The goal is to raise awareness for Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) and help individuals better understand the steps involved when responding to an SCA.Chain of Survival - CPR Awareness

SCA is one of the leading causes of death in North America, with over 40,000 deaths in Canada annually. Many people do not know that a lifesaving device called an Automated External Defibrillator can greatly increase the chances of survival by up to 70% when used correctly. On average, every 1 minute delay in defibrillation will reduce survival rates by 7% to 10%. The sooner an individual responds to a Sudden Cardiac Arrest, the higher the chances of survival.

We’ve partnered with London Drugs because they’re a pioneer when it comes to implementing a workplace AED program. London Drugs was the first major retailer in Canada to put AEDs into all of their stores and they have trained over 1,000 employees in CPR and the use of an AED. Each London Drugs store has an AED located in the pharmacy and the front door of every store has a window sticker indicating that the location is equipped with an AED.

Event Details:LD Event

We hope you’ll join Iridia and London Drugs in understanding the importance of knowing the steps required to save a life if someone suffers a Sudden Cardiac Arrest.

 

Our Medical Education Platform Expands!

Medical Education

We are excited to announce the newest update to our medical education programs: The new Learning Studio!

During the summer and fall of 2014, Iridia Medical worked on finding a dedicated space to host educational programs. The new classroom is located near our headquarters and is dedicated entirely to our educational programs. With an open classroom design and two breakout rooms for group work, we’ve created an optimal learning environment. Additionally, the space features an office for instructor privacy and a kitchen for student comforts.

The self-contained space is a great example of one of the many innovative advances our Education Department has showcased for the New Year.

Medical Education at IridiaMedical Education Stats

Iridia Medical provides engaging, practical emergency medical training to healthcare personnel and lay rescuers. Rooted in best practices, content is delivered by highly experienced medical professionals, who balance learner skill, knowledge, and experience.

Our courses and workshops meet and exceed all recommendations from:

Medical Education Recommendations

To provide the highest quality medical education, all of our workshops can be customized to meet your organization’s targeted educational needs and booked for private groups across British Columbia.

To view the schedule, please visit our website, www.iridiamedical.com or contact us directly to discuss the possibilities of developing a course specialized for your group and to register for any of our courses below.

 

Free CPR and AED Training Events!

If someone dropped to the ground in front of you in sudden cardiac arrest, would you know what to do? Unfortunately, many would not.

A person suffering a sudden cardiac arrest needs immediate help with CPR and an AED (automated external defibrillator). Early CPR and AED use within the first minute doubles the chance of survival.

The Heart and Stroke Foundation wants to improve survival rates by teaching more people CPR and AED use, so that when someone has a cardiac arrest, there will be someone close by who knows what to do.

You can do your part. You can be ready to save a life.

The Heart and Stroke Foundation is offering three regional CPR/AED training events in BC in November. Everyone is welcome to take the free training. You can join them and bring your friends and family. Events will also have blood pressure checks and information on healthy lifestyles.

Free CPR and AED Training Event Information (click on enlarge):

Free CPR Vancouver

For information, please contact:

Shelley Parker
Heart and Stroke Foundation, Resuscitation Program Manager
778.372.8001      sparker@hsf.bc.ca

 

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

 

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

 

What is an AED Program?

The Impact of Cardiac Arrest

In Canada, 35,000 to 45,000 people die of sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) each year. Unlike a heart attack, which is caused by a blockage in an artery, SCA results from an electrical malfunction of the heart. The only effective treatment for this condition is the early delivery of an electric shock by an automated external defibrillator (AED). Response time is critical; for every minute of delay in delivering the shock, survival rates for SCA victims decrease by 7-10 percent.

cardiac arrest survival

The Solution

Recognizing the link between increased survival rates in SCA victims and the prompt use of a defibrillator, the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada (HSFC) has recommended that all Canadians:

  • Have widespread access to automated external defibrillators.
  • Be trained and encouraged to apply cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and AED skills when needed.

When applied to the workplace, these recommendations entail implementing a program that makes AEDs readily available and ensures that staff are well prepared to use them when needed.

cardiac arrest

Our AED Program Process

Iridia provides an AED Program that includes three indispensable components:

1) The AED device, associated accessories, and servicing

Iridia is British Columbia’s sole distributor of LIFEPAK AEDs and we are a regional distributor of Powerheart G3 Plus AED. Both manufacturers are renown for their use of leading-edge technology, the reliability of their units, and after purchase service provided.

defibrillators

2) Initial and ongoing training

Managing a cardiac arrest involves more than merely “pushing the button” on an AED. Respondents must be able to recognize an arrest, perform CPR, and use a defibrillator properly. Our AED training workshops ensure that participants are able to respond effectively when the time comes.

3) Medical direction (a WorkSafeBC recommendation)

Iridia provides a medical direction package, consisting of the following components:

  • Emergency medical response procedures
  • Emergency Health Services liaison
  • Operational debriefing
  • Post incident call review
  • Physician consultation
  • Critical incident stress referrals

Our medical direction package is designed to maximize the value of your AED, and exceeds the recommendations from WorkSafeBC, the HSFC, and Health Canada.

Our Company

Since 1998, Iridia has overseen the training and certification of over 10,000 lay rescuers in the use of AEDs. Dr. Allan Holmes, a fellowship-trained Emergency Physician, is an expert in pre-hospital care and has worked extensively with Occupational First Aid Attendants, fire rescue personnel and the BC Ambulance Service. We currently provide medical direction to over 300 clients including 140 fire departments throughout the province.

It’s Never Too Late For AED Training

Every Tuesday night a group of ex-university basketball players get together to duke it out on the court. This may not be all that unusual, unless you factor in the fact that the players are in their 60s and 70s.

Aptly named, the “Tuesday Knights”,this group of men is still committed to being active and to sharing their love of the game. It`s no small feat to be playing a sport with that kind of intensity at their age, but as evidenced in this Greg Douglas column in the Vancouver Sun, one member of the group accomplished an amazing feat.  

basketball

John McLean, 74 last week, joined a group of young guys at the YMCA on Burrard for a spontaneous free-throw showdown. Seven straight was the number he had to beat. McLean, a Magee high school grad and UBC alumnus, nailed 61 free throws in a row as jaws dropped from the crowd that quickly gathered. “I was getting tired and although I didn’t try to miss on purpose, I was glad when I did,” he said. “I’ve never been in a groove like that before.”

Read more:  The Vancouver Sun

Having said that, there are some natural concerns about 60 and 70 year olds demonstrating that level of physical exertion every week. At their age, the risk of a cardiac event is higher than it was in their younger days. For this reason, the group decided to purchase an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) and were trained in its use by our founder, Dr. Allan Holmes.

“I was approached at a golf tournament by one of the Knights’  members who was aware that many golf courses had AEDs, but many of the indoor basketball venues such as community centers and schools, did not.” said Holmes “This was an exceptionally bright bunch of guys who quickly picked up on the training, asked tough questions and were soon very confident in using the AED, should the need arise.”

defibrillators

This means that if one of the players were to have a sudden cardiac arrest, any of the Tuesday Knights would be there, immediately able to assist, and increase the chances of survival.

Iridia is thrilled to have provided the Knights with their AED and AED Training and training, and applauds their proactive measures. By staying active they are reducing one of the risk factors for cardiac issues, and by having an AED on hand, they are ensuring they’ll continue to play together for many more years. 

Stepping Up to the Plate for AED Training

In March, we announced the winners of our 2012 AED Giveaway – the Kopytko family. Their son, Mitchell, was diagnosed with Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy, a disease of the heart. 

Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy can increase the likelihood of Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA). The only treatment for SCA is though defibrillation. Without immediate access to a defibrillator, SCA is almost always fatal.

For the Kopytko family, having an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) means they now have the right tool to fight SCA.

AED Training

“We are so grateful to have the peace of mind that the AED offers our family, we will always worry about the ‘what if’s’ where Mitchell is concerned, but this gives us a piece of equipment that could make all the difference in a worst case scenario” said Melanie Kopytko.

AED Training

But as important as the defibrillator is, there is one other key component involved – training.

It is true many could pick up a defibrillator and use it without training, but will they be performing high-quality CPR? How do you apply an AED to a child? When should you call 911? These are important questions that training will answer.

Now that the Kopytko family has an AED, the next step was to get them certified. We spoke with FACTs First Aid (located in Vernon, BC), who were so touched by the Kopytko story they generously donated their time to provide AED and CPR certification.

Here’s what Melanie Kopytko (Mitchell’s mother) had to say:
“I just wanted to let you know how well our training went with Jules from FACTs first aid. She was wonderful; she really took her time with Mitchell (10) and Jorja (7) as we thought it was important that they take the training with us.
She was so on task and dialed in to our dynamic that everyone felt very comfortable asking questions, some of them tough and personal because we are thinking it may be this 10 year old child who is our patient one day, and everyone had lots of hands on time with the machine and Annie dolls, as well as a very good understanding of the basic CPR that accompanies using the AED.
I had no doubt the adults would gain from the training, but what touched me most was, like I said, her attention to Jorja, making sure she felt comfortable and sure of herself with what she was learning. They are at that age where sometimes Jorja and Mitchell are home alone together for short periods of time, so it was important she have the knowledge.  
Also with us were Mitchell’s Grandmothers, his aunt, his classroom teacher and his principal, as well as Chad and I of course 🙂
We cannot thank Iridia enough, we feel so fortunate, and now so knowledgeable. I didn’t realize how empowering it would feel to know that I have the tools of CPR if I should need them.”

Iridia is thrilled to hear the training went well; it’s great to have made such a huge impact. We feel very fortunate to be in a position to help others through the promotion of AEDs and life-saving CPR training.

We wish the Kopytko family all the best. – The Iridia Team