An AED, or defibrillator, is a small device that can save someone's life from cardiac arrest. While these devices can help in an emergency, many business owners aren't sure if they're supposed to have one or not. Even without a legal requirement, it's still sometimes a good idea to have one. Here's what you need to know.
The Laws Regarding AEDs Vary By State
The main concern business owners have with AEDs is whether not having one represents a liability. It all depends on the particular laws that exist in your state. Sometimes, local laws regarding AEDs may exist as well.
There's no common law that requires all businesses to have an AED. Businesses that do require an AED according to state or local law likely already know about the requirement. It's something that would have come up as a prerequisite to starting or continuing operations. However, if you're unsure, then you can easily look into your own state's laws on the issue.
Businesses Most Likely to Need AEDs
Even with no common law for them, a few business types will most likely need to have an AED present. Here are some of the business types that need or can benefit from having an AED.
- Gyms, health clubs, and exercise centers
- Swimming pools and places that promote swimming
- Private schools or places where children gather for hours at a time
- Any place with a large number of retirement-age people
Generally, if you have a business that promotes frequent or strenuous activity, then you should consider having an AED there. This applies whether the law requires it or not. In addition, the possibility of cardiac arrest increases in direct relation to how many people are at your business during any given time.
Create an AED Program
Anyone can go into cardiac arrest at any time for any number of reasons. The time it takes for paramedics to arrive is precious time that can mean the difference between life and death. For these reasons, it's worth considering having an AED on site, even if there's no liability attached to the business.
You should also have at least someone regularly on staff with CPR and AED training. Many localities offer training in conjunction with the local EMS. Many other places offer training and AED programs to help businesses that want to have an AED on site.
Having an AED and AED training shows you take your social responsibilities seriously. It can save lives. It can also show your care for your patrons and community.