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For Immediate Release
For more information, contact:
Vince Rivard, 763-236-3777, pager 612-654-8769
Mercy & Unity Foundation earns AHA HeartSaver Award
COON RAPIDS, Minn. 04/13/2004--
Mercy & Unity Hospitals Foundation recently earned the American
Heart Association’s HeartSaver Award for an initiative it helped
develop to equip police and fire vehicles throughout Anoka County
with automated external defibrillators.
Started in 2002,
Mercy & Unity Hospitals Heart Safe Communities
program has helped place more than 50 AEDs with first responders.
Through a charitable golf fundraiser and support from the community,
the foundation pays one-half the cost of the $2,500 unit, which
includes purchasing the equipment, training of personnel and
The program is seen as an extension of the hospital’s renowned
cardiac care because it brings medical technology to the community
that can provide a life-saving bridge for heart attack patients
before they reach the hospital. An AED is the most effective
treatment for cardiac arrest because it interrupts an abnormal heart
rhythm and allows the normal rhythm to regain control. But because
sudden cardiac arrest victims have a short window to be successfully
resuscitated, defibrillation must be done quickly – ideally within
the first 3 to 5 minutes.
Foundation executive director Julie Nelson Gotham said that
several matching grant opportunities remain from the initial grant.
For more information, call the foundation at
Mercy & Unity Hospitals, located in Coon Rapids and Fridley,
are non-profit hospitals that serve the northern Minneapolis-St. Paul
metropolitan area. The hospitals, which are part of Allina Hospitals
& Clinics, are located on the Internet at
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