Participants enrolled in standard first aid training (click here to enrol in Saskatoon) must learn to effectively, quickly and efficiently apply a automated external defibrillator (AED) onto a victim. Candidates should have a good understanding, through practical application, of how to use a AED. Participants will be trained in basic AED use only and candidates should be required to have additional training in the use of AED model at his or her workplace. With effective use of both CPR and AED survival is significantly higher. For every minute that goes by without defibrillation for a patient that has collapses the chances of survival decrease by as much as 10% per minute. From the previously mentioned reasons, it is important for candidates in standard first aid courses to have a strong understanding and working knowledge on how to use a AED.
To successfully complete standard first aid training participants must:
- Understand the importance of early de-fibrillation.
- Understand the purpose and use of a AED and when to use it (victim must be unresponsive with no effective breathing to warrant the use of a AED).
- Candidates must understand the safety considerations when using a AED. Wet environments, electric shock for rescuers, medication patches, metallic objects, pacemakers, oxygen use, pregnancy and other
complications need to be taken into consideration when using a AED.
Participants must also have a good understanding of the general use of a AED. When using a AED candidates:
- Should be familiar with the characteristic features of the AED.
- Must place the AED unit on the rescuers side to avoid potential shock when using the AED.
- Must know to turn it on when it arrives and follow the automatic prompts.
- Must avoid contacting the patient during the analyse or shock prompts and phases and direct all bystanders to stand clear.
- Must continue with CPR unless AED prompts rescuer not to, patient shows signs of life, or EMS advises otherwise.
- Must have a working knowledge of the electrode pads and the placement of the pads on a adult, child and infant (if paediatric pads are available).
- Must have a understanding of where the electrode pads connect to the AED and have knowledge of the functions of the AED.
Proper use and knowledge of a AED is mandatory to successfully complete a standard first aid course. CPR combined with the use of AED is essential to effective life saving and life support rescues. Candidates will have the opportunity to practise and review the previously mentioned information by using AED trainers in a standard first aid class.