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The Carletonian

The Carletonian

The Carletonian

Pre-med student speaks out for more campus defibrillators

<ch year, it is predicted that 1.5 million Americans will have a heart attack, and only two thirds of that group will survive.

With half a million deaths each year from heart failure, ample access to emergency treatment devices, such as automated external defibrillators, proves important for increasing the chance of survival post-lethal heart rhythms.

“Currently, Carleton has six AEDs,” said Ivan Duong ’14, a pre-med student who is passionate about having sufficient safety precautions on campus for heart attacks or sudden cardiac arrests.

“Before this year, there were only four AEDs in each of the athletic centers on campus, which essentially lined the periphery of the campus. But now there is an AED in the Weitz Center and in Sayles.”

However, Duong believes that this quantity is far too small.

“Ideally, every building that has over 100 people trafficking in and out should have an AED,” he said.

Duong, who works as an Emergency Response Technician and is one of the teachers of the CPR and First Aid certification classes on campus, has made it his mission to increase the number of AEDs on campus. He presented his proposal of purchasing at least five more AEDs to Vice President Fred Rogers, but was essentially rejected.

“Vice President Rogers liked the idea but he said that Carleton doesn’t have the funding for it,” Duong said.

“AEDs used to be around $4,000 but are now about $1,000. These cheaper models are what we have in Sayles and the Weitz Center.”

Some states have strict regulations and rules about how many AEDs should be available in schools and public places. Minnesota does not have any such legislation that dictates AED quantity or placement, which might contribute to Carleton’s lacking number.

Regardless, Duong refuses to give up.

“We should have more AEDs in the central part of campus,” he said. “If someone had a heart attack in Olin, someone would have to run to Cowling to pick up the AED to bring it to the victim. That takes an unnecessary amount of time that could be used to save a person’s life.”

Duong surveyed 84 students about AED awareness on campus and found that 86 percent said they would like to see more AEDs installed.

“For me, there are two issues at hand: availability and awareness,” he said. “Hopefully, we can increase availability, but we’ll see.”

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