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ReStart DC Launches Life-Saving Public Access Defibrillation Program
Date:6/11/2009

Program increases community access to automated external defibrillators

WASHINGTON, June 11 /PRNewswire/ -- In an effort to save more lives from sudden cardiac arrest (SCA), The Richard B. and Lynne V. Cheney Cardiovascular Institute at The George Washington University will launch the ReStart DC program on June 11. The goal of the ReStart DC program is to place automated external defibrillators (AEDs) where large numbers of people gather throughout all eight wards of Washington, D.C. and to raise awareness about the critical need for broad AED access to help save lives.

To kick off the program, ReStart DC will present Philips HeartStart AEDs to the leaders of several community organizations that serve D.C. residents. Lynne Cheney will host the event at Holy Comforter-Saint Cyprian Roman Catholic Church on Thursday, June 11, 2009. The launch follows the second annual National CPR/AED Awareness Week.

Each year, an estimated 325,000 American lives are claimed by SCA - an electrical malfunction of the heart that causes it to quiver rather than pump in a normal rhythm. SCA is one of the leading causes of death in the United States and can happen to anyone, anywhere, at any time. In Washington, D.C., it is estimated that SCA claims the lives of 700 people each year.

If someone suffers an SCA, defibrillation, the delivery of electrical current to the heart, is recognized as the definitive treatment. Today, less than seven percent of SCA victims survive, largely because defibrillators do not reach them in time. For every minute that passes without defibrillation, a cardiac arrest victim's chance of survival decreases by about 10 percent. After the first few minutes without defibrillation, not many attempts at resuscitation are successful, so it is critical that bystanders take immediate action if someone suffers an SCA in a public place. Technological advances make AEDs lightweight, p
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SOURCE The Richard B. and Lynne V. Cheney Cardiovascular Institute
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