Area volunteer fire departments – Center Hill, and Douglassville received Zoll AED’s from LifeNet and training from LifeNet’s Training Manager, Kyle Roach. These automated external defibrillators (AED’s) were purchased through a matching granting program from the Texas American Heart Association and LifeNet, Inc. and were donated for use to the departments.

An AED is a portable defibrillator that is used to shock the victim’s heart back into rhythm during cardiac arrest. It is estimated that more than 95 percent of cardiac arrest victims die before arriving at the hospital. Where defibrillation is provided within 5 to 7 minutes, the survival rate from cardiac arrest is as high as 49 percent. Since all AED’s are portable and most are designed to be lightweight and user friendly, these devices help emergency medical personnel provide immediate, lifesaving care for the victim of sudden cardiac arrest.

Sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) is a major health problem that has received much less publicity than heart attack. Over 680 people die everyday from SCA, according to American Heart Association statistics. SCA occurs when the heart abruptly stops. The victim may not even be diagnosed with heart disease. Brain death and permanent death start to occur in just 4 to 6 minutes after someone experiences cardiac arrest. However, the arrest can be reversed in most victims with the intervention of CPR and an electric shock to the heart from a device such as an automated external defibrillator (AED).

“Our job is to save lives. To that end we commit all of our resources and pledge to provide the most comprehensive, state of the art care available,” said David Baumgardner, Executive Director of LifeNet EMS. “It’s one more way we are your resource for safer community.”

LifeNet is a private, not-for-profit corporation serving the Arkansas Counties of Miller, and Little River, and Texas Counties of Bowie, Red River, and Cass with advanced life support ambulance and aeromedical services.