Allina Hospitals & Clinics Heart Safe Communities project receives national recognition from the National Center for Early Defibrillation
Fueled by a passion to save lives, Charles Lick, M.D. launched the
Allina Hospitals & Clinics Heart Safe Communities program (HSC)
in December of 2001. Two years and 250 automated external
defibrillators (AED) later, Allina’s work in making communities
heart safe, through the placement of AEDs in places where Minnesotans
work and play, receives national recognition.
According to the recently released study on public access
defibrillation by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, the
number of survivors of sudden cardiac (SCA) arrest markedly increased
when the victims were helped by community volunteers trained to
perform not only CPR, but also use an automated external
defibrillator (AED). When sudden cardiac arrest occurs, the heart
stops beating effectively, blood does not circulate and no pulse can
be felt. The only effective treatment for SCA is an electric shock
to the heart administered by an AED.
As an emergency room physician for Allina’s
Buffalo Hospital and medical director for Allina Medical
Transportation, Charles Lick, M.D. knows first-hand that sudden
cardiac arrest is a common emergency and that immediate access to an
AED can make the difference between life and death. “When someone
collapses from sudden cardiac arrest, the person must receive rapid
defibrillation within minutes or they will die,” said Lick.
“Through Allina’s Heart Safe Communities program, we are creating a
completely new culture of response among our citizens, we are
empowering them to save lives.”
Since the launch of Heart Safe Communities, Allina,
in partnership with first responder agencies and community leaders
have raised money and successfully placed more than 200 AED’s in
first responder vehicles and public places – places where people
live, work and play.
Official Allina Hospitals & Clinics Heart Safe Communities:
· Minneapolis/St. Paul International Airport – Placement of 65
AEDs at Minneapolis/St. Paul International Airport.
· Elk River Community AED program – Secured 18 AEDs for placement
in squad cars and throughout the Elk River community.
· New Brighton Community AED program – Perhaps the best model for
community engagement, Dr. Lick provided leadership and motivation for
New Brighton community leaders to work together to raise money for
placement of 12 AEDs in key locations.
· Anoka County First Responder Program –This partnership between
Allina’s HSC program, the American Heart Association’s Operation
Heartbeat and the Mercy & Unity Hospitals Foundation created the
Anoka County 1st responder AED program – 39 AEDs have been
placed to date.
· District 112 in Chaska – Following the death a high school
wrestler, District 112 realized the importance of AEDs. Thanks to
Heart Safe Communities, St. Francis Regional Medical Center
Auxiliary and additional community support, 15 AEDs hang in District
112 schools in the Chaska school district.
· Buffalo, St Michael– Similar to the District 112 program,
schools in Buffalo and St Michael are becoming heart safe by
utilizing Allina Heart Safe Communities program model. Over 20 AEDs
are scheduled for placement.
· Columbia Heights School District 13 – Thirteen AEDs for area
schools and fire department
· Eden Prairie – Heart Safe Communities is working with the City
of Eden Prairie to raise funds to place 23 AEDs in public buildings.
The National Center for Early Defibrillation is a not-for-profit
information resource center based at the University of Pittsburgh.
The mission of the National Center for Early Defibrillation is to
foster optimal immediate care for victims of sudden cardiac arrest by
providing leadership, expertise and information related to early
Allina Medical Transportation is one of the
region’s largest ambulance and medical transport services, meeting
the EMS and special medical transport needs of 75 Minnesota
communities in Anoka, part of Carver, Dakota, Hennepin, Isanti,
Ramsey, Rice, Scott, Sherburne and Wright counties. Allina Medical
Transportation is part of Minneapolis-based Allina Hospitals &
Clinics, a non-profit health care system of hospitals, clinics and
other patient care services that provides exceptional care to
communities throughout Minnesota and western Wisconsin and employs
more than 22,000 people. Allina Hospitals & Clinics facilities,
services and jobs can be found online at www.allina.com. Allina
Medical Transportation can be found online www.allinems.com and
the latest health information is at www.medformation.com.