By Scott Thomas
KFVS12 Vice President and General Manager
Sudden cardiac arrest is one of the leading causes of death in the United States. In 2016 more than 350,000 people in the U.S. suffered a cardiac arrest with only a 12% survival rate.
You may have seen Sherae Honeycutt's story on KFVS12 a couple of months back about Donnie Jenkins. He is a high school basketball referee, and between games at Risco High School he collapsed. Lucky for Donnie, Risco High School had a AED in the Gym. On hand medical personnel quickly used the AED to save his life, and I'm happy to report Mr. Jenkins is doing well and on the road to recovery.
This story ended good, but it doesn't always. Not all high schools have AED's.
AED stands for Automated External Defibrillator. It is a medical device that analyzes the heart's rhythm. If necessary, it delivers an electrical shock, which helps the heart re-establish an effective rhythm and can save a person's life.
The American Red Cross believes that improved training and access to AED's could save 50,000 lives each year and the Missouri State High School Activities Association is listening. It is currently surveying their member schools to determine if they have AED's.
We support this study and strongly encourage all schools in the Heartland to make sure they have the appropriate number of AED'S along with properly trained personnel to make a difference in life or death situations. It also would be a good idea if our churches would invest in AED's as well.
So, the next time you are at church or school, find where the AED is, and if they don't have one, ask when will they be getting an AED. Because those three simple letters can be a life saver.
I'm Scott Thomas and that's our ViewPoint.