Abstract 10721: Automated External Defibrillator Availability And CPR Training Among State Police Agencies In The United States
Background: Access to both automated external defibrillators (AEDs) and first responder cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) are key determinants of survival from cardiac arrest. State police officers are a unique class of cardiac arrest first responders as they are responsible for the large network of highways within the US. Prevalence of AED availability and CPR training within the US state police system has not been investigated.
Objective: We sought to determine the accessibility of AEDs and CPR training among state police agencies in the US.
Methods: Contact was attempted with all 50 state police agencies. Once an appropriate contact at each agency was made, they were guided to complete a 15-question online survey.
Results: Of a total of 25 state police agencies that expressed willingness to provide information, 21 surveys were completed (84% response rate). Most surveys (20/21, 95%) were completed by police leadership or individuals responsible for medical programs. The approximate police agency size was reported as 1,300 state police officers with approximately 1000 vehicles per agency. A minority of responding agencies (9/21, 43%) reported that police vehicles are equipped with AEDs. Of the agencies that equip vehicles with AEDs, 5/9 (56%) only equip a minority of their fleet with the devices. Regarding AED and CPR training, 19/21 (90%) state agencies reported training their officers in AED usage and 20/21 (95%) of the agencies reported officer training in CPR.
Conclusion: Less than half of the state police agencies that completed the survey equip their vehicles with AEDs, and those that do provide AEDs only equip a minority of their fleet. A majority of state police agencies surveyed reported training their officers in AED usage and CPR. Increasing AED deployment among state police may represent an important opportunity to improve first responder care for cardiac arrest in the US.
- © 2011 by American Heart Association, Inc.