The country’s largest Rotary district has launched Heart Savers, a project aimed at increasing the number of automated external defibrillators (AEDs) in the community. Sudden cardiac arrest kills about 1500 New Zealanders every year. Rotary’s Roger Harvey said an AED, in conjunction with CPR, would provide the best chance of surviving a sudden cardiac arrest. But New Zealand was still a long way short of where it should be with the number of AEDs needed in communities. Best practice standards suggest there should be 10,000 AEDs in New Zealand but the current number sits at about 6000. Rotary District
9920, which covers most of Auckland and seven Pacific Island countries from Kiribati to French Polynesia, is aiming to put a dent in that deficit by having each of its 53 clubs place an AED in its local community.