Tips for your First Automated External Defibrillator Purchase

Written by Carin Mangimeli

Is your organization, business or office considering the purchase of the life-saving device known as an Automated External Defibrillator or AED? If so, please consider the following tips before making your purchase:

  • Concentrate on well-known/common models – several different companies make AED’s but there a few that are leaders of the industry that have been producing them for years. These companies have undoubtedly worked out the kinks of their devices and concentrate on effectiveness and user-friendly models. Some good brands include Phillips, MedTronic, LifePak, and Heartsine.
  • Consult the experts – call your local hospital, police department or fire department and ask which models they use and/or would recommend for your organization’s size and needs. You may even want to ask for a recommendation of a manufacturer or store to make your purchase.
  • Learn your lesson– all AED users should be trained in the use and functions of the AED and frequently, insurance requires its users to be certified. Some models come with training modes to assist in this procedure.  If not, contact a nearby EMS school or hospital to inquire about required classes for AED users.

[Contact In-Pulse CPR to attend a local CPR and AED class in your area.  Remember an AED is not effective if you and your staff are not properly trained]

  • Consider your needs – will your AED be used primarily on children? Then consider a pediatric model. Adults only? Then ensure that you purchase an adult model. If you will have a mix of both, purchase a model that has both modes. Also, consider how often you would be likely to use the AED. If you are a rescue or health care organization, you will want a model designed for high-capacity use. If you are a business or organization complying with insurance or zoning requirements, purchase a model that can be packed away for months at a time without use and still function at the critical moment. You don’t want a dead battery preventing the use of the AED at the moment you need it most.
  • Do your research – there are a lot of websites, educational materials and classes available for potential users and buyers of AEDs. Read up on the requirements for your organization and the different models available. Also, check your local government websites and/or national government websites for grant options or funding suggestions (fundraisers, etc.).

An AED will assist you to save the life of a heart attack victim – but only if you have one readily available and have been trained in its use. So do some legwork now and save a life in the future.