It was a scary scene in Cincinnati Monday night, when NFL player Damar Hamlin collapsed on the field, suffering from a cardiac arrest during a game between the Buffalo Bills and Cincinnati Bengals.
Hamlin would be revived on scene thanks to CPR being administered right away, and he is now recovering in hospital.
The incident sparked a larger conversation across the continent, including here in Weyburn. What can be done when something like that happens, aside from calling 9-1-1 to have paramedics help out on the scene? What happens if no one in the immediate area knows CPR?
Here in Weyburn, for those situations AEDs are available at a number of locations, including most city-owned and operated facilities.
An AED is an automated external defibrillator, explained Abby Kradovill, the safety coordinator with the City of Weyburn. “It’s kind of used for those people that are experiencing sudden cardiac arrest or different heart conditions like tachycardia.”
Kradovill added that not everyone will need an AED, but the device will not shock unless it is needed.
“They’re pretty smart pieces of equipment that can save a life if needed.”
When it comes to knowledge on how to use an AED, there isn’t any training tha tis needed to be able to use one. The device itself is designed to be able to walk someone through the process when they are utilized.
“It walks you through it,” Kradovill explained. “It gives you verbal cues on what to do; there are great instructions right on the package. It’s very easy, its user-friendly. If you don’t know what to do, you really can’t mess it up.”
While many of the AEDs are in city-owned facilities, it doesn’t mean that use of those is limited to at those facilities. When calling 9-1-1 for a cardiac emergency, they have access to a provincial registry which can direct a person to send a bystander to get an AED, and bring it back to be used.
AEDs are available at the Credit Union Spark Centre, the Weyburn Leisure Centre, Crescent Point Place, Tom Zandee Sports Arena, City Hall, the police station and the public works building and fire hall as well. There is also a plan to have one put into place at Tom Laing Park this spring.
In addition to the city-owned and operated facilities, there are a number of AEDs available at other locations in the city. If a business has an AED at their location, and they would like to have it added to the 9-1-1 registry, they can do so by going to the AED Link System website.