Canadian PAD Programs Offering Free AEDs and Training!

Free AEDs - BC PAD and National PADCommunities and facilities throughout Canada have the opportunity to receive free AEDs and CPR/AED training through the BC and National PAD Programs.  Iridia would like to raise awareness that these AEDs and training are available through a simple application process.  With the public’s help, we can communicate theseopportunities to communities and facilities that meet the criteria – please spread the word. An increase in AED placements will lead to an increase in lives saved across the country.

Please see the BC PAD Program and the National PAD Program summaries, criteria and application process:

Heart and Stroke BC PAD Program

Program Summary

Since 2013, The Heart and Stroke Foundation (HSF) of BC has been placing free AEDs in areas they identified as priority locations for AEDs.  To date, 264 AEDs have been placed and 3 lives have been saved.

  • The HSF has a goal of placing 450 AEDs
  • The HSF has recently opened up the application process to additional sites

Program Criteria

  • Locations must be open to the public where large numbers of people gather and/or where there may be a delay in accessing emergency services
  • Very small communities that have one central meeting area in town
  • Not-for-profits that perform outreach to large groups of people
  • Senior centres
  • Churches that have a community building attached
  • HUB Schools (host after school programs, rent out the location)
  • Recreation centres
  • Swimming pools / aquatic centres
  • Community centres
  • Public libraries
  • Busy playing fields 
  • Parks and beaches

Application process

  • If a facility/community location meets the above criteria, they will need to complete the application and email it to the BC PAD Program Manager for review/approval
  • Each application asks that the facility provide a letter from the community supporting the site to have an AED installed
  • To learn more about the program, please visit the BC PAD Program Website

Heart and Stroke National PAD Program

Program Summary

Since 2013, The Heart and Stroke Foundation (HSF) of Canada has been placing free AEDs in rinks and arenas all across Canada.  The end goal is to have an AED in every rink and arena from coast to coast. To date, the program has placed 1,773 AEDs in rinks and arenas across Canada. The end goals is to place 8,000 AEDs across Canada.

  • The HSF is still accepting applications from rinks and arenas that do not have an AED
  • The HSF has recently opened the application process up to facilities that are not rinks or arenas

Program Criteria (For non-rinks/arenas)

  • Locations must not have an AED to be considered for a free AED and training
  • Facilities that permit public to use their premises, services or equipment for exercise, fitness training, bodybuilding or similar purposes and where at least 20 hours of indoor/outdoor physical activity programs are held in the majority of weeks in a year. This includes:
    • martial arts facilities
    • dance studios
    • wellness centres
    • curling rinks
    • and similar facilities
  • Special consideration will be given to isolated and remote First Nations, Métis and Inuit community locations, which may include community centres, medical transport, fire departments and central meeting locations

Application process

Thank you in advance for sharing these details with your friends, your communities and facilities that meet the criteria laid out by both programs. Together we can help enable peace of mind. If you have any questions, we’d be more than happy to help – simply contact our AED department at:

 

The Tour D’Iridia is complete!

It’s a wrap!

Iridia Medical Tour D'IridiaLast week Michael travelled through Vancouver Island by bike for 5 days straight, making 18 official stops. The Tour D’Iridia introduced BC PAD Program Coordinators to Iridia Medical, and included a quick “health check” on the AED devices. Michael met with a series of dedicated people, proud to have the AEDs available in their communities, who welcomed him to their locations with the Island’s special brand of friendliness.

During his time on the road he showcased his journey through social media, providing us with some great shots of the defibrillators on site, and a taste of Island beauty. Everyone at Iridia cheered him on through our Facebook page and encouraged him every step of the way. With each day presenting a unique set of challenges, Michaels cycling expertise ensured that he was at every stop on time, ready to answer questions and discover some of the innovations, such as Code Blue systems, added at some locations. .

Our first Tour D’Iridia was an exciting learning experience and an experiment in finding new ways to reach out to our customers. The Tour highlights our commitment to Client Focus, Innovation and Corporate Responsibility, and our passion for public access to defibrillation. We will continue to develop unique and engaging ways to raise awareness of PAD programs through similar projects in the future.

We hope you enjoyed coming along on the trip with us and experiencing the tour through Michael’s eyes.

We’ve added a gallery of images below with some of Michael’s best shots:

The Case for Public Access to AEDs

Automated External Defibrillator Banner

For one man, a trip to a local mall turned into a cardiac emergency. Without warning, he was struck by sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) – a life-threatening condition that affects up to 40,000 Canadians each year. Without rapid treatment, particularly a shock delivered by an automated external defibrillator (AED), most cardiac arrests result in death.

This man was fortunate to have had his SCA event in the right place and at the right time. Mall security immediately started CPR and knew that using an AED was the critical next step. Fortunately, a London Drugs store was nearby. They had an easily accessible AED located in their pharmacy and, most importantly, staff trained to use it. Thanks to the actions of mall security and London Drugs staff, this man beat the odds and survived his cardiac arrest.

London Drugs AED

Having ready access to an AED is key, as every 1 minute delay in defibrillation will reduce survival rates by 7% to 10%. The fact that London Drugs had an AED immediately available significantly contributed to this man’s survival – London Drugs clearly demonstrates the importance of public access defibrillation (PAD) programs.

London Drugs is a pioneer in Canada 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. The program was developed in partnership with Iridia Medical who is an industry leader in PAD program development and implementation. 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.

London Drugs AED

London Drugs’ AED program actively promotes their “good neighbour” policy in recognition that none of the surrounding retail outlets has an AED present. If an AED is needed, London Drugs and their staff are there to help. To date, the AEDs have been used 7 times since the program launched in 2009. In 4 cases, the incidents occurred at surrounding businesses that did not have an AED and London Drug staff responded with their AED. These businesses now further appreciate the importance of quickly using an AED during an SCA to raise survival rates.

Canada is making strides when it comes to widespread public access to AEDs. In 2013, the Heart and Stroke Foundation launched a formal PAD Program in British Columbia. This important initiative will see about 650 AEDs placed in public locations over three years. Additionally, in 2014, the government of Canada in partnership with the Heart and Stroke Foundation launched a national campaign. This ground-breaking program will see over 2,000 AEDs installed in arenas and recreational facilities across Canada.

London Drugs’ AED partner, Iridia Medical, is involved in both of the provincial and federal programs which will help raise the awareness of AEDs and hopefully raise out-of-hospital survival rates.

London Drugs is a glowing example of a workplace AED Program as well as a public access AED program for the community. In our next blog, we will take a look at what the future holds for public access to AEDs. In the meantime, please help us by spreading the word about the importance of AEDs – learn more.

 

 

Moving Toward an AED Utopia

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Part II in a series. View part I

Earlier this week, we posted the first blog in a 2-part series as a follow up to the recent episode on CBC Marketplace in which the question was posed as to whether publicly accessible defibrillators are really that accessible.

In our first blog, we looked at the challenges associated with publicly accessible defibrillators.  In this blog, we will consider some of the solutions which are available to overcome the challenges profiled in our first story and how you can help.

AED Density

As mentioned in our earlier blog, AED density is our first challenge. Ideally, we would like to see a 75 percent survival rate for out-of-hospital cardiac arrests. To achieve this, the first person/s on the scene would have to travel no more than 450 feet to reach an AED (about 90 seconds each way using a brisk walking pace of 300 feet per minute). This is an ambitious goal with a very simple solution – AEDs need to be everywhere; in our restaurants, cars, places of work and any other highly trafficked public location.

Fortunately, a couple of initiatives are underway to place AEDs into these high traffic locations:

  • In British Columbia, the Public Access to Defibrillation (PAD) Program, funded by the Heart and Stroke Foundation of BC & Yukon and the Ministry of Health, will see 650 AEDs and associated training delivered to communities throughout BC. The expected impact, as articulated by Health Minister Margaret MacDiarmid, will be to “save hundreds of lives”. Learn more about the BC PAD Program.
  • The Government of Canada recently announced the National AED Program – Federal AED Placement Initiative, which will see a targeted 3,000 AEDs distributed to recreational facilities, mostly arenas, across the country. The Initiative will also see 30,000 people trained in the use of AEDs. Learn more about the National PAD Program.

AED Accessibility

The second challenge we mentioned in our earlier blog is accessibility. AEDs are often placed with little regard to the possibility of their eventual use. The solution for companies and for establishments such as hotels, restaurants, recreational facilities and the like is to implement an AED program, with oversight provided by a medical director, before an AED is installed.

looking for an AED

In addition to determining, as part of the program, where an AED should be placed and what signage should appear, an AED program will also help with:

  • choosing an appropriate AED and accessories
  • setting up a servicing schedule for the AED
  • planning initial and ongoing training in the use of the AED
  • integrating the AED into your medical emergency response plan
  • liaising with local EMS providers

AED programs are designed to maximize the value of your AED and meet all the recommendations from the Heart and Stroke Foundation, WorkSafeBC, and Health Canada.

AED Awareness

Of all the components that lead to a successful AED program deployment, and hopefully, to lives being saved when the need arises, awareness is the critical issue. By talking about sudden cardiac arrest and how it can be treated with the use of an AED, we are all doing our part with raising awareness of this critical issue in the community.

In contrast to the tragic SCA incident we mentioned in our first blog, take a look at the following video profiling an NHL player who suffered SCA on the ice, and who was saved thanks to an easily accessible AED and the fast actions of his teammates and an onlooker:

As you can see, SCA can happen to anyone, anywhere, at any time. You never know when your CPR skills and an AED will be needed.  Take a look around at the public places you often visit and see whether you can spot the AEDs.  You might need to know one day exactly where they’re located.

Iridia is working to raise awareness of locations of AEDs through its AEDs Everywhere campaign – a crowdsourcing campaign to map the location of AEDs all around the world. The AEDs Everywhere map allows anyone to upload the location of an AED.

Learn more about the program and how to participate.

Since 1998, Iridia has overseen the training and certification of over 30,000 individuals in the use of AEDs. We currently provide AED medical direction to over 300 clients including 140+ fire rescue services.

Part II in a series. View part I

AEDs From Coast to Coast

We Love AEDs

As you might already know, we love our Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) at Iridia Medical.

In fact, our company was founded because of this passion for AEDs and their life-saving abilities.  In 1998, publicly-accessible AEDs and workplace AED programs did not exist – only ambulance attendants and fire rescue personnel had access to AEDs. We challenged this practice and pioneered the first public-access AED program in British Columbia. As the foundation of our expanding company, we remain passionate about AEDs and continue to implement and support AED programs across Canada.

Since 1998, we have become a leading distributor of Cardiac Science and Physio-Control AEDs and have placed thousands across the country – 1,998 AEDs in 269 cities/towns/communities to be exact (as of September 19, 2013).

It can be difficult to visualize numbers and for this reason, we created our Iridia AED Placement map. Not only is this information better visualized but it also speaks to the level of importance that has been placed on AEDs and access to them. Even some of the smallest of towns are equipped with an AED in the event of a Sudden Cardiac Arrest.

1,998 AEDs Throughout Canada

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On this map, we’ve also included AEDs placed through the Heart and Stroke Foundation’s BC Public Access to Defibrillation Program. In this Program, initiated in February 2013, 450 AEDs over a period of three years will be donated to communities across the province. As the exclusive distributer for the Program, we are proud to have placed 100 AEDs across the province (as of September 18, 2013).

We will be updating this map with every AED we place and together we can raise Sudden Cardiac Arrest survival rates from coast to coast.

 

Public Access to Defibrillation (PAD) Around the World

Iridia Medical is a proud partner of the Heart and Stroke Foundation’s PAD program. Over the past decade and a half many countries have worked to develop programs that facilitate the public’s access to Automatic External Defibrillators (AEDs). In order to develop an innovative public access to defibrillation program for BC, the Heart and Stroke Foundation surveyed a variety of national and international PAD programs. We are excited to be part of this exceptional project that will ultimately save the lives of countless British Columbians. To celebrate BC’s PAD Program, we decided to take a look around the globe to see how different Public Access to Defibrillation programs were able to create positive impacts in their communities.

Public Access to Defibrillation

Canada

Canada has a few provincial PAD programs. The Ontario PAD program has been active since 2007, and they have installed around 3000 publically accessible AEDs. Over the next few years, and with the help of additional provincial funding Ontario is planning on installing another 2500 Public AEDs. Today, over 40 lives have been saved by publically accessible AED’s in Ontario.

United States

In the United States, many cities have developed their own PAD programs. San Diego started “Project Heartbeat” in 2001. The initial goal of their program was to place 250 AEDs in public places throughout the city in time for the 2003 Superbowl. San Diego managed to exceed their goal by placing 550 publically accessible AED units in that time frame. San Diego is working to make AEDs prevalent in public places as Fire Extinguishers currently are. San Diego’s AED of choice is the Powerheart AED G3 Automatic; an AED that Iridia Medical is also proud to carry in our product line. Today, Project Heartbeat has saved 107 lives in the Greater San Diego area.

Powerheart AED G3

In Florida, the City of Miami/DADE fire-rescue department developed the “Team for Life” program in an effort to promote public access to defibrillators in the region. The fire-rescue department provides funding, training, equipment and program management for the public AED program. Miami/DADE has also worked to create one of the largest public access to Defibrillator initiatives in the world by equipping 1900 Police vehicles with Lifepak 500 AEDs.

Spain

In 2011, Spain became the first country in the European Union to start a PAD Program. The Territory of Girona, Spain intends to install 500 fixed AEDs and 150 portable AED units throughout the region. Spain has chosen to install the Powerheart G3 Plus Automatic AED on busy street corners and in public buildings. 

Australia

Meanwhile in the Southern hemisphere, Saint John’s Ambulance Australia started the community based “Heart Start” program. This program was begun in 2004 and provides guidance for public institutions seeking to incorporate an AED into their facilities. To date, this program has saved 19 lives. In 2012, Saint Johns Ambulance began offering subsidized AED’s to the public. They have received an overwhelming amount of public support for their program and they are hoping to see it grow dramatically in the future.

Hong Kong

Moving into Asia, on March 11th 2007, the Hong Kong College of Cardiology in conjunction with the Lan Kwai Fong Association installed their first AED in a public place, as part of their “Heart-Safe Place” program. In the program’s first year, over 100 AEDs were installed in places ranging from community centers and sports arenas to amusement parks.

Japan

Since 2004, Japan has been working to incorporate AED’s into their communities. When the program began there were approximately 9906 publicly accessed defibrillators in Japan. Due to a number of public and private initiatives, by 2007 the number of community based AEDs had risen to about 88,265. A study conducted on the Japanese PAD initiative found that the increase in public access to defibrillators was shown to dramatically improve an individual’s chances of surviving a cardiac event .

Iridia Medical is very proud to be part of the BC-PAD program and we are very excited to be joining these other locations in an effort to bring accessible AEDs to the public.

[1] Kitamura, T., et.al. “ nationwide Public-Access to Defibrillators in Japan” New England Journal of Medicine, (March 18, 2010) http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMoa0906644

An Automated External Defibrillator (AED) Saves Another Life

With the recent launch of the province-wide Public Access Defibrillation (PAD) Program, news of an AED save in Toronto couldn’t have come at a better time. Since 2006, the public defibrillator program in Ontario, funded by the Heart and Stroke Foundation has saved 48 lives.

Public Access Defibrillation

Now it is our turn here in BC. With the PAD program underway, we can expect the same impact, as articulated by Health Minister Margaret MacDiarmid, we will be to “save hundreds of lives”. Indeed, with increased access to AEDS, each of the 2000 SCA deaths reported annually in BC has the potential to be avoided.

The team here at Iridia Medical is excited to play an ongoing role with the HSFBC and PAD program, we hope to see many lives saved.

Toronto AED Save

TORONTO, Feb. 13, 2013 /CNW/ – Once again, AEDs and CPR have proven their worth as a Toronto man is alive today thanks to the quick actions of bystanders. 

On Sunday, January 13, a 51-year-old Toronto-area resident Paul Poce was playing hockey at the Malvern Recreation Centre when he collapsed to the ice after suffering a cardiac arrest. His son Ben Poce, who also works as a paramedic for Peel Regional Paramedic Services, immediately rushed to his father’s side. Recognizing the signs and symptoms of cardiac arrest, Poce called out to his teammates to dial 9-1-1, instructed his friend Shawn Nichols to start chest compressions, while he retrieved the on-site AED. 

Read the full story

CPRAbout the Heart and Stroke Foundation:

The Heart and Stroke Foundation (heartandstroke.ca), a volunteer-based health charity, leads in eliminating heart disease and stroke, reducing their impact through the advancement of research and its application, the promotion of healthy living and advocacy.