SCA News

SCA News

Florida Bill Protects Employers from Lawsuits

May 1, 2008 –ORLANDO–Florida legislators on Wednesday approved a bill making it easier for businesses that deploy automated external defibrillators (AEDs) to get immunity from lawsuits. The measure (SB 564) ensures that an employer who acquires a defibrillator is protected from lawsuits even if it did not provide appropriate training to employees, as long as the device is equipped with audible or visual instructions. The subject of defibrillator immunity gained prominence following the death late last year of a tourist who suffered a heart attack while riding Expedition Everest at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Both the House and Senate approved the bill unanimously, and it now heads to Gov. Charlie Crist.

Kane Forest, IL, Preserve to Buy Defibrillators

April 29, 2008 – GENEVA, IL ­– Robert Quinlan was only slightly kidding.

As he introduced the topic of the Kane County Forest Preserve District buying 12 automated external defibrillators (AEDs) recently, he said, “This is a topic close to my heart, obviously.”

Quinlan has not had to use a defibrillator but said later he does feel a lot of tension in his job as the chief financial officer for the forest commission. And that is just one of the many potential reasons defibrillators could be useful, especially in a forest preserve, where help might not immediately get to someone in distress.

The commission’s utilization committee recommended spending $15,000 through the state purchasing plan to buy 12 AEDs.

“(An AED is) very simple to use," said Commissioner John Fahy, R-West Dundee. “It walks you through it. But people have to get training so they’re not intimidated to use it.”

Pope Benedict XVI Accepts Gift of AED

April 17, 2008 –VATICAN CITY – Pope Benedict XVI personally accepted the gift of an automated external defibrillator (AED) from Gintaras Vaisnys and Fabio Rangoni, representatives of a U.S. defibrillator company.

Vaisnys and Rangoni met with the Pope at a recent papal audience where Vaisnys presented the AED while Rangoni explained to the leader of the world’s Roman Catholics how defibrillators can save victims of sudden cardiac arrest (SCA).

“Pope Benedict was genuinely interested and immediately grasped how a defibrillator can save lives,” Vaisnys said.

Vatican City is one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations: approximately 17,000 visitors arrive each day to see St. Peter’s Square and Basilica, the Vatican Museums including the Sistine Chapel, the Vatican Gardens and Grottos, and other attractions.

AEDs To Be Placed in East Baton Rouge Schools in Wake of Student Death

April 17, 2008–In a first for local schools, the East Baton Rouge Parish School Board will soon place in its high school athletic departments a dozen automated external defibrillators donated by area medical groups

The first of the devices will be donated to the School Board today in the memory of Glen Oaks High School student-athlete Shannon Veal, who died Feb. 18 after collapsing during a basketball game. The first automated external defibrillator, or AED, will go to Glen Oaks High.

After learning about Veal’s tragic death — believed to be caused by a heart condition, David Carmouche, MD, persuaded eight area medical groups to donate about $20,000 together to buy the 12 devices with the help of the Kiwanis civic organization.

iPods and Other Digital Media Players Safe for ICD Patients

April 4, 2008­–­WASHINGTON, D.C.–Digital media players are safe for use by patients with pacemakers and implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs) according to new research published in the April issue of the Heart Rhythm Journal. Despite recent concerns raised about the potential for dangerous interactions between digital media players and implantable cardiac rhythm devices, new studies show there is no evidence of electromagnetic interference between digital media players and the intrinsic function of pacemakers and ICDs.

A preliminary study publicized in May 2007 at the Heart Rhythm Society’s 28th Annual Scientific Sessions, reported that iPods cause pacemaker interference and, in one case, caused a device to stop functioning. Since the initial report was made, further research has been conducted to better understand the potential interference and if this interaction could impact device functionality in patients.

AHA Recommends Hands-Only CPR for Bystanders

April 1, 2008­–DALLAS–Chest compressions alone, or Hands-Only Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR), can save lives and can be used to help an adult who suddenly collapses, according to a new American Heart Association scientific statement. View the Science Advisory here

The statement, from the association’s Emergency Cardiovascular Care (ECC) committee, is published in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association. Hands-Only CPR is a potentially lifesaving option to be used by people not trained in conventional CPR or those who are unsure of their ability to give the combination of chest compressions and mouth-to-mouth breathing it requires. 

AEDs and CPR Are Equally Helpful for SCA in the Home

Study Finds AEDs Underused at Home

April 1, 2008­–CHICAGO­–The first study to explore the use of automated external defibrillator (AEDs) in the home has found that although the safe and easy-to-use devices are effective for certain types of cardiac arrest, they were underused. The Home Automated External Defibrillator Trial (HAT), a randomized international clinical trial, was supported by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) of the National Institutes of Health.

Researchers will present their findings from the international study at the 2008 American College of Cardiology (ACC) Scientific Sessions in Chicago April 1. The results are being published online simultaneously by the New England Journal of Medicine and will appear in the April 24 print edition. An editorial by David Callans, M.D., of the University of Pennsylvania accompanies the article

The Anniversary of a Loved One's Death Can Trigger Sudden Death

March 29, 2008­–CHICAGO, Il–If the date of a loved one’s passing is approaching, beware. The anniversary of the death of a close family member, especially a mother or father, is a significant trigger for Sudden Death (SD), especially in men, according to research presented today at the American College of Cardiology’s 57th Annual Scientific Session. Understanding the triggers of SD—death that is unexpected and occurs rapidly, frequently within one hour of the onset of symptoms and usually due to lethal arrhythmias—may help researchers discover ways to anticipate and prevent premature loss of life.

Calling All Heroes - SCA Foundation Announces Call for Nominations for "People Saving People" Awards

March 26, 2008–PITTSBURGH­–The SCA Foundation has established an annual award program to honor "ordinary" people with extraordinary heroic spirits who help save the lives of victims of sudden cardiac arrest (SCA). The People Saving People awards will recognize members of the public whose lifesaving actions have made the difference between life and death for SCA victims.

The purpose of the program is to increase awareness about the critical need for laypersons to be prepared to intervene in sudden cardiac emergencies.

Awards include:

First place: One (1) automated external defibrillator (AED), which may be donated to the organization of the winner’s choice;

Second place: Free admission to the Emergency Cardiac Care Update, sponsored by the Citizen CPR Foundation, June 13-15, 2008, Las Vegas;

New York Legislature on a Mission to Save Lives

March 25, 2008­–SCA Foundation­–If legislative activity in the New York State Assembly related to the use of automated external defibrillators (AEDs) is any indication, there is growing awareness here that victims of sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) deserve ready access to this lifesaving treatment. At least 15 laws and one administrative code addressing AED training and use have been enacted by the NY state legislature. In addition, 27 bills are pending.

Legislative efforts to save SCA victims began in New York 10 years ago, with an amendment in 1998 to NYS Public Health Law Article 30/3000-B. This legislation authorized Public Access Defibrillation (PAD) programs and encouraged greater acquisition, deployment and use of automated external defibrillators (AEDs) in communities statewide.

Since then, AED programs have been mandated in the following locations:

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Mission & Vision

The mission of the Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) Foundation is to prevent death and disability from sudden cardiac arrest. The vision of the SCA Foundation is to increase awareness about sudden cardiac arrest and influence attitudinal and behavioral changes that will reduce mortality and morbidity from SCA.

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