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Riverside Health System Purchases 22 Automated External Defibrillators for Local Athletic Programs

March 22, 2023
group of three athletic trainers with an AED device

Today, Riverside Health System announced the purchase of 22 additional automated external defibrillators (AED) for athletic trainers (AT) in the Riverside network. These AEDs will aid in Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) coverage to Newport News Public Schools and Isle of Wight County Public Schools athletic teams. With the increasing prevalence of cardiovascular events in athletes, Riverside has made a substantial investment in the ability to provide immediate care when and where athletes need it.

“In recent years and through high profile incidences, such as Buffalo Bills football player, Damar Hamlin, who experienced cardiac arrest while playing against the Cincinnati Bengals, athletic trainers have seen an uptick in sudden cardiac events occurring during sporting events,” says John Barley, D.O., fellowship trained sports medicine physician with Riverside Orthopedics and Sports Medicine Specialists. “Through the purchase of additional AEDs, our athletic trainers are better equipped to provide care to athletes in the case of a cardiac event.”

Riverside purchased a new, state-of-the-art AED model called ZOLL AED Plus ®, that both educates and guides experienced or unexperienced rescuers on how to perform high-quality CPR with visual and audio prompts to ensure compression pressure and cadence are aligned with the most recent guidelines. The AEDs also provide heart analysis to determine the best course of action for the patient.

While student athletes suffering from cardiac events is rare, in the range of about 1 in 50,000 to 1 in 80,000, it is important to be prepared. The equipment is ready for rescue with industry-leading batteries and pads, one piece electrode design and increased durability to be ready when and where it’s needed. With the ZOLL AED Plus®, Riverside providers and AT’s can provide help in a heartbeat and provide efficient, quality care for a student athlete suffering cardiac arrest and possibly save a life.

“We are committed to providing the best care for our student athletes,” says Michael Dacey, M.D., CEO of Riverside Health System. “During a cardiac event, every second counts and the quick recognition and response from providers to have an AED in place and begin administering CPR, is critical. Riverside’s investment in 22 new, state-of-the-art AED’s is a testament of our commitment in ensuring our athletes have the best care when they need it most.”

The AEDs will be delivered to Riverside and be charged, tagged and prepared for delivery to schools this summer, just in time for the preseason training. To learn more about Riverside’s sports medicine program, please visit riversideonline.com/sportsmedicine.