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Time to Check the Batteries:
McLaren Bay Medical Foundation Launches Task Force
It’s the 5-year mark and time to check the batteries and pads on the Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) that were distributed in 2008 to roughly 90 locations across the area by McLaren Bay Medical Foundation. In order to accomplish that, McLaren Bay Medical Foundation is launching a task force on Wednesday, February 6, 2013 that will begin to contact each of the AED location sites to ensure that the batteries are fully charged, that the AEDs are in working condition and that a plan is in place to make sure the units are being checked regularly. AED batteries are good for approximately five years, so now is the time for the check-up.
The AEDs were donated to various schools, churches, museums, athletic fields, city entities, and police departments in the Great Lakes Bay Region. Gena Gates, McLaren Bay Medical Foundation Board Trustee, will chair the AED task force. Others on the task force include McLaren Bay Medical Foundation board members.
In 2007, McLaren Bay Medical Foundation (then known as “Bay Medical Foundation”) launched a community-wide AED fundraising effort with the cooperation of Benjamin and Jan Zurvalec, who lost their son, Stuart, when he suffered sudden cardiac arrest during a basketball tryout at a Bay County middle school. McLaren Bay Medical Foundation adopted the Zurvalec’s goal of placing at least one AED in every school in Bay County and expanded upon it to include additional locations. In 2008, McLaren Bay Medical Foundation purchased and distributed the AEDs to the various sites.
The American Red Cross estimates that as many as 50,000 lives could be saved annually by following the “Chain of Survival” and using an AED. Early defibrillation is possibly the most important link, because CPR alone will not necessarily restore a normal heartbeat.
The Chain of Survival is comprised of:
- Early access
- Early CPR
- Early defibrillation
- Early advanced care
The task force will contact the AED sites by phone, email and site visits. The McLaren Bay Medical Foundation will provide training as well as battery and pad replacements if necessary. The progress of the task force can be followed on the Foundation’s Facebook and Twitter sites, listed below.