No, you try it
Getting the public to use an automatic external defibrillator on a person in sudden cardiac arrest often plays out like a Life cereal TV ad from the 1970s, a study has found. “Did you try it?” “I’m not going to try it, you try it.” “I’m not going to try it.” “Let’s get Mikey.” Unfortunately, Mikey isn’t usually willing to use the defibrillator either, as the study found that only 28% of participants in the study “correctly identified the AED, knew its purpose and expressed a willingness to use it,” the study’s lead author, Dr. Patrick Schober, of V.U. University Medical Center in Amsterdam, said in a release.
Moreover, only 47% of respondents in a public place with access to an automatic external defibrillator would be willing to use it, according to the study, conducted in an Amsterdam train station where AEDs were available.
The study notes that sudden cardiac arrest is a leading cause of mortality in North America and Europe, and the odds of survival decline by 7% to 10% per minute of delay in defibrillation. AEDs are increasingly available in public spaces.
“AEDs are actually very easy to use, but it is obvious that the public has not gotten that message,” Schober said.