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Two hundred and forty seconds — that’s the small window of time first responders have to revive a patient suffering from sudden cardiac arrest. What happens during those crucial four minutes can mean the difference between life and death.
But if first responders have access to an automated external defibrillator (AED) — a portable, battery-operated device that can deliver an electric shock through the chest to the heart — that tight timeframe expands, and the likelihood of survival increases.
Like any other technology, AEDs can become outdated, and it’s recommended they be replaced every eight years — but new AEDs come with a high price tag. A new AED can cost anywhere from $1,275 to $3,000.
When it was time for the Lafayette Fire Department (LFD) to replace its AEDS, the unit had to crunch the numbers to see if it was even feasible.
“We have a limited budget,” said Richard Doyle, LFD chief. “When we spend money, we have to be strategic about what we purchase because inevitably some things always have to go the wayside.”
Fortunately for LFD, the generous donors of west-central Indiana made sure their local heroes had the tools they needed to keep their community safe. Their generous gifts to Indiana University Health Foundation’s Arnett Community Initiatives Fund enabled the Foundation to buy nine state-of-the-art AEDs for the department.
"We go out every day and try to save lives,” said Doyle. “This updated equipment will help us do just that.”
The Arnett Community Initiatives Fund benefits health initiatives in the greater Lafayette community, especially alongside partners such as first responders.
Past donations to the fund have also supported trauma and health education for healthcare professionals and community members.
“Gifts to the Arnett Community Initiatives Fund are important because they enable IU Health Foundation to care for Hoosiers outside the walls of our hospitals,” said Amanda Rardon, RN, CEN, TCRN, IU Health director of Emergency Services. “Those gifts also help us achieve our mission of making Indiana one of the healthiest states in the nation.”
If you’d like to support community initiatives in west-central Indiana, contact IU Health Foundation Philanthropy Director Julie Paolillo at 765.429.7525.