Deaths due to Sudden Cardiac Arrest has been declining in recent years; however, out of the total number of SCAs tallied by the American Heart Association, AED equipment were used only 7.3% of the time. This is because although cost-effective AEDs exist, most people still see them as a luxury.
Sudden Cardiac Arrest is not only scary because it can happen to anyone but also because the majority of SCA cases happen outside the hospital or other healthcare facilities. In cases like this, the survival of the individual relies on two things: the resuscitative methods employed by the layperson and the promptness of the EMS response. Without AED equipment, the only course of action respondents have is CPR, which is often not enough to restore normal heart rhythm, which is one of the reasons for high AED price.
Sadly, because AED usage in layperson response is only 7.3%, most people die before reaching the hospital. A portion of those that do survive by the time EMS arrives usually die on route or at the hospital. Only 10.8% successfully make it to hospital discharge, and only 8.2% are lucky enough to survive without lasting impairment. When a person collapses due to SCA, the flow of oxygen to the brain stops. The longer the person’s brain is deprived of oxygen, the more likely they are to die or suffer a permanent brain injury.
This is why it is important to have durable AED devices in places inhabited by people. Even without medical training, laypersons can use AED equipment to conduct AED shock to stabilize a collapsed individual while waiting for EMS to arrive. The benefits of having an AED equipment are obvious, but some individuals still need more convincing.
The Cost-Effectiveness of an AED
Cost-Effective is defined as the capacity of something to generate positive results without costing a lot of money. It means that the benefit of a product or service must outweigh its costs to be considered as such. Expensive devices become cost-effective when they are used regularly and produce good results with each use.
This is where the idea of cost-effective AEDs falter because AEDs are not meant to be used regularly. Any day when you don’t have to use an AED is considered a good day. However, how can one justify the cost of not only buying an AED but implementing an AED program if it does not get used enough to make the purchase worth it?
When AED devices were first introduced to the market, they were expensive and complicated. This is because they were meant to be used in smaller health establishments by medical professionals. However, in recent years, more accessible and durable AED devices have been released by many AED brands. These devices were meant for use by normal people without medical training. These AED equipment were marketed towards business establishments, commercial buildings, and even homes.
Why AEDs are Actually Cost-Effective
Individuals who think that AED equipment are not cost-effective simply because they are not used frequently and fail to see the bigger picture. With how accessible AED devices have become, it is important to think about what you get in return for the money you’re investing into it
AED Devices Save Lives
A cost-effective AED is the machine that saves lives. How much is a human life worth? By this logic alone, the benefits you get from investing in an AED program trumps whatever associated costs it may bring.
Even with technical advancements, the fatality of Sudden Cardiac Arrest still sits heavily at 90%. If you compare the costs of an AED device with the cost of hospitalization and the lifetime expenses one can incur due to permanent impairment, the device becomes more than worth it. Around 18% of patients who survive SCA suffer long-term, and sometimes lifelong, complications such as brain injury, memory problems, aphasia, and depression.
AEDs Are Now Built For Practicality
Even with the obvious life-saving benefits that these devices bring, AED manufacturers are continuously perfecting their technology to create the ultimately best AED. This is in hopes that more people would see cost-effective AED equipment as a must-have in their establishment, similar to fire extinguishers and smoke alarms.
The best AED are built with a remote AED solution, which allows the AED companies to self-check the device for you and notifies you whenever the device needs new batteries or AED replacement pads. This automatic maintenance and replacement routine allow the device to have a longer lifespan and saves you a ton of money in repairs.
Modern durable AED devices are also less bulky, making transportation and handling easier. Because these devices are easier to use, there’s an increase in demand for AED equipment in medical establishments. These devices have been known to save lives in far-flung areas with limited medical equipment.
AEDs Build User Confidence
The best AED is not the one with fancy features but the user-friendly one. Since the majority of SCA cases happen outside the hospital, more often than not, the first responder would be a civilian with no medical background. Medical groups and associations have continuously advocated for training layperson in medical response. They hope that if most civilians are training in first aid and CPR, deaths before the arrival of EMS could be greatly avoided.
However, a lot of people fear new and unknown technology, especially if this technology can affect the survival of another person. Today’s cost-effective AEDs are automated, so all responders need to do is power the device up and attach the AED pads. This lessens the incidence of human error, thereby producing good results.
AED programs come with training, which increases the user’s confidence and comfort level with using the device. When unpredictable events like Sudden Cardiac Arrest occurs, people’s minds usually go blank, and they freeze in place for a few seconds. However, because modern AEDs are easy to use, responders can quickly compose themselves and start resuscitating the victim because they are confident in their knowledge of the device.
AED devices are cost-effective investments that all establishments should have because of their ability to save precious lives. There shouldn’t even be any discussion where you try to justify the importance of having one because the value of every single human life eclipses everything else. And thanks to technological advancements by AED companies, modern, cost-effective AEDs have become more practical, accessible, intuitive, and affordable even for residential use.
At the end of the article, I would like to recommend an AED brand that is Mindray AED. Mindray is a worldwide leader in providing health equipment and solutions to both medical professionals and ordinary individuals worldwide. They manufacture cost-effective AEDs ranging from semi-automated and fully automated AED to biphasic AED defibrillator in hopes that this life-saving device will become a permanent fixture in workplaces and homes in the near future.
 About Sudden Cardiac Arrest. Available at: https://www.sca-aware.org/about-sudden-cardiac-arrest/latest-statistics (Accessed: 19 April 2021)