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By David Knopf, News Editor
The acronyms AED and CPR are widely used – even if the finer points of what they do and how they work together are glossed over.
But the alphabet soup of life-saving techniques worked its way into the public’s mind after a school custodian went into cardiac arrest Jan. 2 outside Richmond Middle School.
After a harrowing experience, hospitalization and surgery for a blocked artery, employee Mike Payne survived and is recuperating at home in Richmond.
Several factors contributed to his survival, not the least of which were the skills belonging to the emergency personnel who assisted him, first at the scene, then at Ray County Memorial Hospital, then in a Life Flight helicopter and finally at North Kansas City Hospital.
One of the offshoots of all this was a call by family members for additional training for school employees on the district’s AEDs – shorthand for Automated External Defibrillator.
The $1,400 machines are deployed in each of the district’s four schools, as well as schools in Orrick, Hardin and Elkhorn, the Farris Theatre, Orrick Community Center, the Veterans Building and city gym in Richmond and elsewhere.
In all, there are 38 AEDs in Ray County administered through a Ray County Ambulance District program with more initials – PAD. Jessica Essig, an emergency medical technician with the district, says the Public Access to Defibrillators program is designed to help organizations obtain and maintain the devices.
See the complete story in the Monday, Feb. 17, 2014