Arch Extends AED Program Management to EMS Agencies
SAN FRANCISCO, CA – Challenges running and managing Public Access to Defibrillation (PAD), or large-scale Automated External Defibrillator (AED) unit programs, are not limited to AED owners. Emergency Medical Services (EMS) agencies, hospitals, and fire departments routinely oversee large, county-wide, programs for their constituents, however, management of these programs can be problematic for several reasons.
“Placing, locating, and tracking AED units and ongoing requirements such as battery and electrode pad expiration dates can be a complex endeavor,” states Micah Bongberg President and CEO of Annuvia. “Commonly organizations are excited to deploy units. They get them on the wall and think they’re going to start saving lives right away! Unfortunately, basic processes aren’t established on day one. Consequently, EMS agencies find themselves playing a never-ending game of catch-up in order to track and manage vital program details, like where AEDs are located and who is responsible for checking them to ensure they’re up-to-date. By the time EMS can verify the records of one AED located at a school, a site contact on the other side of town might leave without appointing a new point of contact. Consequently, the AED falls behind on its simple maintenance and nobody knows until its too late.”
Such confusion leads to liability exposure and, consequently, the deployment of fewer units. Today there is a myth surrounding the AED unit market: that is, by removing all “medical direction” and tracking restrictions, more AEDs will be deployed in communities across the country. “Neglecting to replace batteries and electrode pads is likely to be a ‘grossly negligent’ act should a case go to a jury,” states Bongberg, “no matter what the Good Samaritan laws state.” As such, modifying the laws isn’t the barrier to wide-spread AED unit adoption. Rather, simplifying ongoing maintenance and tracking can be.
Annuvia released a customized AED unit platform with AED unit deployment in mind. “The goal of our EMS AED unit management program is to show EMS agencies just how easy it is to track and manage legally-compliant AED unit programs. Our system allows EMS agencies to focus on what they’re best at, while giving them the peace-of-mind that the AEDs in their county are up-to-date and fully operational.”
Arch’s EMS management program takes an EMS agency’s existing records, often maintained in a static medium like excel or paper filing cabinets, and turns the data into a dynamic resource that diversifies the ongoing responsibilities, involves on-site stakeholders, and pools the management responsibility amongst a group of collaborators – including on-site AED owners. If an existing agency already has an AED unit program, the Arch system uploads all current records so that EMS officials can manage all of their records in a more secure and accessible location. Arch even offers tools to add registration and tracking mechanisms on an agency’s website so that they can collect data from AED owners in their jurisdiction more easily and manage all records in one place.
“EMS agencies exist to make the public safer, not to push paper and take on complex, long-term administrative projects. EMS (agency) budgets are constantly under scrutiny and our belief is that more can be done with the few precious dollars that are available,” says Bongberg. “EMS agencies hire payroll companies and bookkeepers to manage financial records, it makes all the sense in the world that they’d partner with an organization that specializes in AED program management, to run their community’s AED program.”
Certain efficiencies can’t be easily replicated; now with Arch, they don’t have to be.