Mitigating the Impact of AED Recalls for AED Owners & Distributors Alike
SAN FRANCISCO, CA – As the goods and services we use in everyday life become more technological in nature, recalls are a fact of life. The cost of research and development as well as the necessity to “scoop” the market make it economically essential to place items in the marketplace as soon as possible. Once placed, technological advancements continue, sometimes resulting in either a recall or a field upgrade. Automated External Defibrillators (AED units) are not immune. At present, there is no registry system such as that with automobiles that will automatically generate mail notification of recalls and upgrades. Currently, the only way the owner of an AED device can gain the peace of mind that their product is not immune to upgrades is to manually check its serial number against a list on the AED manufacturer’s website. With a maze of direct AED sales, AED sales from “master distributors” and their sub-distributors, online purchases, and owners moving their AED units from one location to another, relying on the AED manufacturers to notify them of an upgrade can be complex and, all too frequently, missed. Clearly, this is not an efficient or effective way to ensure that these life-saving devices in the field are as current as they need to be and the Food and Drug Administration has taken notice.
“To remediate this existing deficit, Arch provides AED owners and distributors with tools to learn of recall and update notifications, much like an operating system upgrade or update on a computer,” states Micah Bongberg, President and CEO of Annuvia, the developers of the Arch AED Medical Direction and Oversight system. “If used, these tools prompt affected owners to access the manufacturer’s website for more information, if needed. Further, the notification can potentially include such ‘fixes’ as self-test procedures or shipping instructions, should it be necessary to return the unit to the AED’s manufacturer for onsite work.”
Clearly, Arch’s advancement will provide AED owners and AED distributors with peace of mind, knowing that each unit is continually checked and ready for use. It is possible that an out-of-date unit could become the basis of a lawsuit in a worse case scenario. Thus, with Arch’s recall-check service, that danger is mitigated, freeing the small business owner to focus upon the development of business, not worrying about the status of their safety program.
“Arch was built to show AED owners the value of purchasing AED medical direction and oversight programs. Unfortunately, with a lack of advancements and enhancements in our industry, AED owners have become disenchanted with AED program management services, instead opting to use home grown systems or, worse, no system at all,” states Bongberg. “We’re redefining what AED medical direction and oversight are and, in some cases, explaining to AED owners for the first time why such services are needed and incorporated into law.”
Arch, the first AED Medical Direction and Oversight program of its kind, is the first to offer smartphone mobile applications, automatic EMS notifications, and an integrated e-commerce system to help AED owners and AED distributors purchase necessary replacement accessories for the units they own or manage. “The goal of Arch is to show AED owners that, while potentially complex, the undertakings of pursuing and deploying AED units is simply the right thing to do. Our hope is that by offering assurance, confidence, and reliability to our clients’ AED programs, we’ll remove some of the existing barriers to deploying this important life-saving technology,” states Bongberg. And, if the growth rate and adoption of the Arch system to date is any indication of this aim, Bongberg’s goal might just be right on the money.