Defibrillators, also known as an automated external defibrillators or AEDs, are crucial to saving lives of Australians who suffer sudden cardiac arrest.
In Australia, cardiovascular disease takes a life every twelve minutes and accounts for one in four deaths. A study by Liz Paratz, researcher and cardiologist at the Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute, reveals that only 10% of the 20,000+ Australians who suffer from sudden cardiac arrest survive an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest.
Is it worth buying a defibrillator?
Every minute counts in an occurrence of sudden cardiac arrest, and having an AED nearby is a profound, life-saving purchase you would do well to make.
But, how do you know you are buying the best defibrillator Australia? With many types of automatic defibrillators available to buy, it can be confusing to know which units you should buy for your workplace, home or publicly-accessible areas.
Whether you are looking to buy defibrillators for a large deployment or wanting to update your workplace first aid kit, we have put together this guide on what to consider when buying an AED.
What should I look for when buying a defibrillator? – Quick Guide
- Defibrillator – ease of use
- Maintenance of the AED
- Who will be using the AED?
- Semi or fully automatic defibrillator?
- AED Warranty
- Characteristics, features, and inclusions of defibrillators
- AED Storage
- Where to buy the best defibrillators in Australia?
1. Defibrillator- ease of use
While many AED models have similar functionality, they do have some nuances in terms of ease of use and operation. These differences can impact how well someone can easily operate an AED in a time of crisis. The time it takes to figure out how to apply the defibrillator could mean the difference between life and death.
Importantly, select a model that provides audible feedback and coaching of how CPR is administered so as to assist an untrained bystander achieve the best patient outcome.
2. IP rating of the AED
IP (International Protection) rating, also referred to as IP protection class, consists of a simple, two-digit code that classifies how well an AED is protected against environmental conditions like moisture and dust.
The first digit indicates the resistance of AED against the ingress of solid objects, i.e., body parts, tools, dust, or soot. The second digit indicates the level of protection from water.
Basically, the higher the IP rating is, the better, more durable an AED is. AEDs with higher IP ratings are recommended for professional rescuers, outdoor locations, harsh factory environments, near marine environments, and poolside. AEDs with lower IP ratings are ideal for schools, households, offices, and similar environments.
3. Who will be using the AED?
Audit the people in your vicinity and evaluate their potential need for an AED. Will you be needing an adult or paediatric unit? An adult unit delivers stronger shock levels, so if you have younger individuals who are at risk of a sudden cardiac arrest, it is best to be prepared and buy a unit that has a child mode switch, or a separate unit specifically designed for paediatric patients.
4. Semi or fully automatic defibrillator?
The timing of when an AED delivers a shock depends on whether it is a semi-automatic or fully automatic defibrillator. Although they are equally efficient, a semi-automatic AED requires the operator to press the button and manually take the next steps as directed by the defibrillator.
A fully automatic defibrillator will deliver the shock when it detects a shockable rhythm and provides a warning to first responders.
5. AED warranty
When you are considering purchasing defibrillators, select one that has a long life (8 or more years) so as to amortise the upfront investment over a longer period.
6. Characteristics, features, and inclusions of defibrillators
Make it a point to review an AED unit’s characteristics, features, and inclusions. Below is a guide to questions that will help you decide if you are buying the best defibrillator for your needs:
- Does the AED come with a protective case, cabinet or wall bracket?
- How often will you need to replace batteries and pads?
- Do the members of your workplace, organisation or household have training to properly operate these types of defibrillators.
7. AED Storage
You have to be able to place an AED in a location that is accessible to most people and can easily and quickly be retrieved.
For every minute that passes without the AED being used on someone suffering a sudden cardiac arrest, their survival rate declines by approximately 10%.
An AED should be placed within a 180 second / 3 minute round trip to retrieve it and bring it to the victim.
8. Where to buy the best defibrillators in Australia?
After having considered the above factors, the last and most important thing to consider is where to buy the defibrillators. Select a supplier that has experience in selling defibrillators and that can provide advice and superior after sales service and support.
Price is only one component of your decision making process in selecting a defibrillator. A credible supplier will walk you through the pro’s and cons to ensure you select a defibrillator best suited for your environment.
Integrity Health & Safety: leading defibrillator supplier in Australia.
At Integrity Health & Safety, a Supply Nation certified Indigenous owned business, we strive to be an ethical, sustainable and socially responsible company that provides our clients with leading WH&S products, services while leveraging these relationships to support and improve Indigenous healthcare capability.
When considering which defibrillators to buy, we can assist you with:
- Advice on defibrillator selection
- Audit your current AED setup, batteries and pads
- Free Online AED familiarisation training
- Service and support
Using our many years’ experience as Paramedics and Healthcare workers, we are able to advise on best practice for defibrillators as part of your home, community or workplace first aid kit and help to empower your staff to feel confident to act in an emergency.