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External defibrillators

This article was originally published in The Gray Sheet

Executive Summary

Greater availability of automated external defibrillators (AEDs) and training in their use is urged by the American Heart Association in a major revision of its emergency cardiovascular care guidelines unveiled Aug. 15. Updating AHA's previous 1992 guidelines, which also cover CPR training, the 2000 guidelines recommend that AEDs be placed where there is a reasonable probability of one sudden cardiac arrest occurring every five years. The guidelines also recommend as a goal delivery of electric shock by a defibrillator within five minutes for an out-of-hospital sudden cardiac victim and within three minutes for an in-hospital victim. Developed by an international panel of experts over the last two years, the guidelines will be published in the August 22 issue of Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association
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