NBC Montana reports school AEDs required since 2020 have saved three of the four cardiac arrests in schools already.


MISSOULA, Mont. — A simple device that could save lives is missing from many places that need it most.

The state of Montana released the following statistics: In four recent cardiac arrests, one each in Missoula, Kalispell, Townsend and Park City, each location had an automated external defibrillator, and three people survived.

Experts say that shows why AEDs and CPR training are critical.

Montana does not require CPR training

“When somebody goes into cardiac arrest, if they receive CPR from a bystander right away, the chances of survival increase from 10% to 30%. And if the bystander can run and get a defibrillator and use it even before EMS arrives, the chances of survival are about 50%,” said Mary Newman, the president and CEO of the Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation.

Montana’s health officials ask schools to register their AEDs with the state. We’re told that doesn’t always happen. But in four western Montana counties, a total of 20 districts registered at least one.

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