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Sudden Cardiac Arrest Defibrillators Donated to St. Cloud Library

Sudden Cardiac Arrest Defibrillators Donated to St. Cloud Library

St. Cloud Public Library now has two Automatic External Defibrillators (AEDs) thanks to a donation from Central Minnesota Heart Center and Take Heart St. Cloud. The Heart Center’s executive director Bob Johnson presented the AEDs to St. Cloud Public Library Board of Trustees President Jim Pehler at the Board’s Nov. 17 meeting.

AEDs are the quickest and most efficient way to help save individuals with sudden cardiac arrest (SCA). During cardiac arrest, the heart can stop beating entirely causing blood flow to the rest of the body to cease. AEDs deliver a brief, powerful, electrical shock to the chest, helping to restore the heart’s natural rhythm.

One AED is located on the first floor of the library behind the Circulation Desk. The second AED is located on the second floor behind the Information Desk. Any member of the public who needs the AED to assist another person may remove the unit from its box on the wall and begin using it. After being turned on, the AED will automatically give verbal instructions indicating how to use it.

Central Minnesota Heart Center
The Central Minnesota Heart Center at St. Cloud Hospital is a comprehensive cardiac care center dedicated to the discovery, management and control of cardiac disease. It has donated nearly 100 AEDs to schools, townships, and cities in the last five years, said Johnson. It started working with the Take Heart St. Cloud program a few years ago to increase the survival rates of cardiac arrest patients when someone witnesses the arrest.

Take Heart St. Cloud
Take Heart St. Cloud is an initiative to increase the survival rate from SCA, often confused as a heart attack. (SCA is an electrical problem that disturbs the pumping action of the heart. A heart attack occurs when a portion of the blood flow to the heart gets clogged and prevents oxygen getting to the heart muscle.) Part of the systems-wide approach Take Heart promotes is training people how to do cardiac pulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and how to use an AED. Great River Regional Library (GRRL) staff participated in the Take Heart St. Cloud training at GRRL’s all-staff training day in 2008. The AEDs, however, are designed for use by people who have not been trained. Each of GRRL’s 32 branch libraries has received a CPR training kit to facilitate training of additional staff.

Approximately 95 percent of the people who have a SCA die before they get to a hospital. The Take Heart initiatives in St. Cloud and Anoka have raised the survival rate from 9 percent to 17 percent. Because of this success, they are expanding statewide in Minnesota. If you would like the free 25-minute non-certified CPR/AED training, please call Susie at (320) 251-2700, ext. 54174.