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Philips Supports the Boston Marathon as the Sole Provider of Life-Saving Medical Devices
Date:4/18/2008

which provides caregivers the vital information needed for such potential cases.

Deployment of defibrillators throughout the race course is also critical to public safety since sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) requires immediate treatment. Defibrillators deliver a potentially life-saving electric shock to the heart to stop the most common cause of SCA -- an electric malfunction that causes rapid and chaotic heart activity, called ventricular fibrillation -- and restore a normal heart rhythm.

"The health and safety of all runners, as well as spectators, of the Boston Marathon is our highest priority," said Pierre D'Hemecourt, M.D., co-medical director for the Boston Athletic Association. "Race amenities such as fluids, medical care and traffic safety are standard protocol, and with Philips HeartStart AEDs and ALS monitors throughout the course, we are prepared to treat a number of medical emergencies rapidly and effectively."

Deemed one of the world's most prestigious and oldest annual road racing events, the Boston Marathon draws more than 500,000 spectators along the 26.2-mile course, making it New England's most widely viewed sporting event. However, with more than 20,000 official runners, each year the event presents an opportunity to sharpen emergency preparedness skills.

In the case of SCA, a rapid response is the most important factor in saving a victim's life. At this year's marathon, defibrillators will be available at every mile post, assuring prompt medical attention regardless of a runner's location on the course. Additionally, HeartStart MRx ALS monitors will allow medical staff to assess and triage patients on-site.

SCA affects more than just elite athletes. As one of the leading causes of death in the U.S., claiming more than 325,000 lives each year, SCA poses a risk for anyone, from young athletes, to weekend warriors setting out on new spring workout schedules, to people who do not participate in athletic activities. In
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SOURCE Royal Philips Electronics
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