Re: AED for common house
From: Sharon Villines (
Date: Mon, 19 Nov 2012 16:34:17 -0800 (PST)
On Nov 19, 2012, at 6:51 PM, Lynn Nadeau / Maraiah <welcome [at]> 

> Do any other groups have a heart defibrillator? We are hoping to get  
> one here at RoseWind (Port Townsend WA).

One of our teams investigated these a few years ago and found that both the 
training for use and the regular calibration (or something like that) was quite 
serious and made it impractical. They require regular attention and are not 
without risk if wrongly used. This team was very hot on it and they backed off 
as soon as they started interviewing providers.

My own estimation is that the chances of a heart attack occurring when someone 
happens to be in the CH and someone else remembers, finds, and feels 
comfortable using the defibrillator are slim. It has to be used within minutes 
to have any effect, and is not a sure cure.

I was more in favor of purchasing one and having the one resident who had as 
serious heart problem keep it in his unit. Someone else at risk could then keep 
it. This resident lived almost a block from the CH and it would have been 
useless to him there.

We are also near a hospital, however. From past experience it takes 5 minutes 
from phone call to ambulance at the curb. For us the focus on getting that 
phone call made and, if wise, getting the person to the curb would be time 
better used.

But every situation is different. Location and presence of a well-trained 

Sharon Villines
Takoma Village Cohousing, Washington DC

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