AED device could help rural sheriffs save lives
It’s such a simple device packed with life saving technology.
A quick training video, shown to members of the Mesa County Sheriff’s Department Rural Area Division or RAD officers Wednesday afternoon, explained how to properly place two adhesive electrodes onto a victim’s chest then push Start. The Lifepak Automated External Defibrillator or AED device then monitors heart rhythms, giving automatic shocks if necessary, followed by instructions to the officer about starting proper cardiopulmonary resuscitation.
“These are really going to give our officers a chance to save a life,” said Mike Hill, EMS coordinator for the Mesa County Sheriff’s office.
Each RAD officer, whose job it is to patrol the outlying areas of the county including Gateway, Glade Park, the Grand Mesa and Bookcliff areas, received an AED device. These officers often arrive on the scene of an emergency before other emergency personnel, Hill said.
The Mesa County EMS Council determined that giving these officers AED devices was an easy way to improve the EMS services throughout the county, Hill said.
A total of six AED devices were donated to equip the RAD officers. Two were donated by the Family Health West Hospital, two were purchased by the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office and two were donated by the Mesa County EMS Council. Five of the devices will be in the vehicle of RAD officers and the other will be given to the Alternative Sentencing Unit.
“We are really happy to be a part of this,” said Angelina Salazar, director of communications for Family Health West.
The officers were excited too. Deputy Sheriff John Coleman was impressed with the simplicity of the device. “I work well into the back country and quite frequently arrive before the ambulance,” Coleman said.
He anticipates using the device for off-highway accidents or to save those hiking or biking in rural areas. It also could be used in wild land fire situation where firefighters are exerting themselves in extreme conditions. “It could save the life of a firefighter in a cardiac incident which happens,” he said.