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.
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.
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.
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.
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.