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Editorial: Show us your AEDs

Richmond malls are a perfect place for publicly accessible AED units
AED at Garry Point

Last week the Heart and Stroke Foundation (HSF) opened its online registry for the BC Public Access to Defibrillation (PAD) Program.

London Drugs stores in Richmond are the first private sector places to have their Automated External Defibrillators (AED) registered with the BC Ambulance Service.

Meanwhile, the City of Richmond is in the midst of registering its 30 AEDs (located in parks and civic facilities) with the registry.

That means if someone suffers a sudden cardiac arrest at or near a registered location, any member of the public who dials 911 will be told of the AED’s location.

A simple set of instructions attached to the AED can guide anyone to use the device.

When used with CPR in the first 10 minutes of a heart attack, the chance of surviving such an episode increases from five per cent to up to 75 per cent, according to HSF.

Every minute counts, so, it's important that these devices be publicly accessible in large gathering spots.

While there may be fears of vandalism and theft (AEDs cost about $2,000), a simple alarmed container can mitigate this risk.

According to the foundation, a large public gathering place that attracts over 1,000 adults each day can expect at least one sudden cardiac arrest every five years.

Richmond's largest malls — Aberdeen, Lansdowne and Richmond centres — only keep their AEDs under lock and key, out of public sight.

While it is good that the malls have an AED, the Richmond News is challenging them to display them in public. Doing so may save lives.