Promoting Community Awareness About Automated External Defibrillators

With evidence mounting that access to Automated External Defibrillators (AED) significantly boosts the survival rate of heart attack victims, these life-saving devices are becoming more prevalent -- you can even order one now through the Sharper Image catalog. Saint Mary's College has joined this significant public health initiative by installing an AED at its Soda Center conference facility, a gift from the Kiwanis Club of Moraga Valley.

An AED is an electro-medical device used to get a normal heart rhythm during a cardiac arrest. According to the American Heart Association, more than 250,000 people die of cardiac arrest each year. Often the difference between life and death is in the time it takes to get the heart beating again by using an AED, which delivers a shock to the heart.

A dedication ceremony was held Aug. 4, 2005 in the Soda Center on the campus of Saint Mary's College, 1928 St. Mary's Rd. in Moraga. The ceremony promoted community awareness about the importance of installing AEDs and recognized the Moraga-Orinda Fire District and Contra Costa County Supervisor Gayle Uilkema for their support in the effort. A heart attack victim who was revived by an AED was a key speaker.

Contacts for more information:

* Debra Holtz, Director of Media Relations, Saint Mary's College - (925) 631-4222
* Nancy Daniel, R.N., Continuous Quality Improvement Coordinator for the Moraga-Orinda Fire District - (925) 258-4574
* Chuck Treat, Kiwanis Club of Moraga Valley - (925) 631-0859