Automated External Defibrillator (AED) program
During cardiac arrest, every second counts. If a defibrillator can be used -- ideally within about three minutes -- the victim has a 50-to-70-percent chance of survival. National statistics indicate that 80 percent of all cardiac arrests occur outside the hospital, and only 5 percent of those individuals survive, simply because they could not get help soon enough. That’s why Community Hospital launched a program in 2003 to make easy-to-operate defibrillators available throughout the area.
Cardiac arrest is when a life-threatening change to a person's normal heartbeat occurs and the heart is unable to pump blood. The only treatment for cardiac arrest is defibrillation, or an electric shock that jolts the heart back into beating, administered within minutes of the patient collapsing.
Community Hospital, in collaboration with the American Heart Association, started its community defibrillator program by donating 20 AEDs to key locations throughout the community. Today the AED program, now under Community Hospital’s Tyler Heart Institute, has more than 220 AEDs in 164 locations throughout Monterey County.
Tyler Heart Institute provides equipment at discounted prices, program oversight, maintenance, and compliance support when organizations enroll in its AED Program. Nonprofit organizations and schools can apply for partial or complete grants.