AEDs placed in Naples public spaces


By Dawn De Busk

AN AUTOMATED EXTERNAL DEFIBRILLATOR (AED) — such as this one have been installed in the Umbrella Factory Outlet Supermarket sometime in the near future. (De Busk Photo)

AN AUTOMATED EXTERNAL DEFIBRILLATOR (AED) — such as this one have been installed in the Umbrella Factory Outlet Supermarket. (De Busk Photo)

Staff Writer

NAPLES — The majority of the time, a person does not wear their heart attack on their sleeve.

Most times, the symptoms of a heart attack will go unnoticed or unheeded. A heart attack victim may take note of some symptoms, but not tell anyone. But typically, heart problems happen suddenly and with little warning.

The Naples Fire and Rescue Department has acquired five devices that allow bystanders to assist someone suffering from heart problems. The device is called an Automated External Defibrillator (AED).

The department received a grant from the nonprofit Narragansett Number One Foundation to pay for the life-saving devices, according to Naples Deputy Chief Mark Scribner.

So far, the AEDs have been installed at the Naples Town Office, the Singer Center, the Naples Public Beach, and at the Umbrella Factory he said.

Additionally, the piece of property acquired by the town to store fire and rescue department equipment will be a site for an AED. The lot is located off Route 11, and was formerly used for storage and vehicle maintenance by the Maine Department of Transportation (MDOT).

One other popular public space is being eyed for the remaining AED.

Department personnel have been working with David Allenson, the owner of the Umbrella Factory Outlet (UFO) Supermarket, to install an AED in the grocery store.

“Tony’s Foodland is a nice public access place with a high amount of traffic,” Scribner said.

“The AEDs are compatible to the ones on the ambulances. You can unplug them and they don’t miss a beat,” he said.

According to a 2007 study at John Hopkins Medicine, it is estimated that 522 lives can be saved during the course of a year through the use of AEDs that are placed in public spaces.

“Researchers found — in real-life, emergency situations — that use of the laptop-sized devices by random bystanders more than doubled survival rates among victims felled by a sudden heart stoppage due to a heart attack or errant heart rhythm,” the Hopkins article said.

Another study from 2010 indicated that 470 lives were saved annually in the United States and Canada when AEDs were used by bystanders. That study was published by the Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation.

Both studies stated that the use of an AED greatly increased the survival rates of people who experienced heart problems.


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