Defribrillator Donation from Area Mine Will Aid Local Lifesaving Efforts

A thoughtful donation from a local gold mine is not only generous, say EMS officials, but will increase the potential for lifesaving in the community.

The SSR Mining-Marigold Mine recently donated five automated external defibrillators to HGH EMS Rescue for use in that agency’s Public Access Defibrillator program, “HeartShare.”

According to Marigold Senior Safety Coordinator Shane Anderson, his company recently switched AED brands. In order to create consistency across the mine site, the company opted to give away the five alternative brand units, creating a very welcome situation for HGH EMS Rescue.

“This is an incredibly generous donation,” said HGH EMS Rescue Chief Sean Burke. “We really want to recognize Marigold, not only for the donation, but for the saved lives that may come from this.”

Since 2005, HGH EMS Rescue has placed 228 AED units throughout Humboldt County; Marigold’s recent donation will raise that number to 233 units ready to prevent sudden cardiac arrest from proving deadly.

According to HGH EMS Rescue AED Coordinator Julianna Obregon, rescuers have just 10 minutes to act in the event of sudden cardiac arrest. Survival rates decrease by 7 percent to 10 percent for every minute that goes by without treatment.

Obregon said each year more than half a million people die from sudden cardiac arrest “and most of them will not have had any presenting symptoms for heart disease,” she said.

In contrast, use of an AED can double victims’ survival rates. Obregon said the units are user-friendly so a bystander can use an AED to deliver a lifesaving shock, which momentarily stops all electrical activity in the heart, giving the organ a chance to resume its normal rhythm.

Chief Burke said the donated units will be distributed to areas throughout the community with a high probability of use.

“We have seen the lifesaving benefit of AEDs over and over again in our community,” he said. “This is an excellent way for our community members to link arms with us and help their neighbors in need.”

For more information on the Humboldt General Hospital “HeartShare” Public Access Defibrillation (PAD) program, please contact AED Program Manager Julianna Obregon at (775) 623-5222, ext. 1363.