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9 keys for implementing an AED program in your police department

AEDs should be seriously considered as a new standard method of treatment for cops who are called to a scene involving a cardiac emergency

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The following is paid content sponsored by Philips

The use of automated external defibrillators (AEDs) in police departments is a vital component of protecting the public. As police agencies continue to evolve and take on new life-saving responsibilities traditionally associated with those in medical professions, AEDs should be seriously considered as a new standard method of treatment for cops who are called to a scene involving a cardiac emergency.

According to Steve Drewniany, Deputy Chief of the Sunnyvale Department of Public Safety and head of the city’s AED program, agencies looking to implement a program of their own must take the following steps:

1. Set up a plan for how you’ll deploy the AEDs

2. Update everyone’s training on CPR and AEDs beforehand

3. Coordinate with your local county’s emergency medical services

4. Develop your budget and equipment replacement schedule

5. Develop a relationship with your fire department and ambulance provider for restocking and consider using the same types of AEDs they have (for economies of scale in purchasing)

6. Reach out to other agencies to find out how they deploy AEDs (the Rochester, MN police department is one example)

7. Put a policy in place that ensures the tracking of the AEDs (where they’re located, how they’re carried in patrol cars, etc.)

8. Require periodic refresh training (agencies will likely have more refresh training in the beginning versus later in the program)

9. Track your saves — start meeting the people you’re saving in the community and recognize the officers who have saved them (Sunnyvale has an annual ceremony celebrating the officers and survivors)

Cole Zercoe previously served as Senior Associate Editor of Lexipol’s and His award-winning features focus on the complexity of policing in the modern world.

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