NORTH PLATTE, Neb. (KNOP) – The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services is placing life-saving training and technology in the hands of law enforcement, thanks to a $6.4 million Hemsley Charitable Trust Grant.
Nearly 200 law enforcement agencies are being trained this month on how to use automated external defibrillators. It’s a device that’s expected to increase the chance of survival by nearly 40 percent compared to 28.6 percent when patients must wait for a “first shock” by EMS personnel.
The grant will distribute 2,500 AED’s to law enforcement agencies, first responders, state offices and facilities.
“Early CPR followed by quick defibrillation increases their chance of survival,” said K.C. Bang, Hooker County Chief Deputy. “It’s really amazing to me that they are putting them out statewide where all law enforcement agencies will be able to have access to them, which is really a neat situation.”
The North Platte Police Department will receive ten AED’s for each of their patrol units.
“We’re out on the street 24/7 so if we’re closer and we can get the process started before paramedics get there and potentially save a life, that would be great!” said North Platte Police Department Public Information Officer Matt Elder.
An additional 100 AED’s are expected to be distributed next year.
The Hemsley Charitable Trust and DHHS encourage law enforcement agencies that already own AED’s to exchange or redistribute them to local community organizations that need them.
AEDs are portable devices used to diagnose and treat sudden cardiac arrest through defibrillation, which re-establishes an effective heart rhythm. The AEDs selected for distribution feature technology that reduces pauses during CPR and, therefore, improves blood circulation and odds of survival. These devices can use Wi-Fi to send near real-time information about a patient’s heart to emergency services, improving post-event evaluation and care.
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