CMU to install 13 additional defibrillator machines on campus


Central Michigan University is installing 13 additional automated external defibrillators in various heavily-trafficked buildings on campus.

AED machines are commonly found in places that have a high volume of people because the machine must be used within minutes of cardiac arrest, or else the patient is at risk of experiencing irreversible brain damage. Cardiac arrest occurs when a patient’s heart suddenly stops beating. Because blood is no longer being pumped throughout the body, damage to the brain and other vital organs can occur as a result of oxygen deprivation. Since death can result in just minutes, the use of an AED machine to restart the patient’s heart can save their life.
The machines should only be used in the event that someone has stopped breathing and has no pulse and have built-in voice prompts that tell the person using them when to administer shocks to the patient. The shocks help to normalize the patient's heart rhythms.

"If cardiac arrest is not treated within minutes, it can lead to death," said Angela Smith, assistant director of Business Services.

Among being efficient in certain cardiac situations, Environmental Health and Safety Manager Jon Kujat said the AEDs were installed to improve the overall health safety on campus.

To operate an AED, Kujat said, is fairly self-explanatory.

"A built-in computer analyzes the patient’s heart rhythm and will only advise a shock when it is necessary," Smith said.

Although prior training is not necessary to use these machines, CMU is offering First Aid, AED and CPR training through the American Red Cross.

Registered nurse Jeanne Lannel said each unit costs the university about $1,000.

In addition, Smith said every two years the replacement pads will cost $650, and every four years it will cost $1,300 to replace the batteries within the machines.

AEDs are being installed on the first floor of Anspach Hall, Bovee University Center, Park Library, Wightman Hall, Pearce Hall and Warriner Hall, among other locations. Machines were previously installed in four other spots around campus.

Kujat said there was no specific incident that sparked CMU to invest in the AEDs. The price of the technology was available at a reasonable rate and CMU decided that the AEDs would be an improvement to the safety of the faculty, students and visitors.

"It's the best practice as we go forward," Kujat said.


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