Intended for healthcare professionals

Bmj Usa

A shocking issue

BMJ 2004; 328 doi: (Published 26 February 2004) Cite this as: BMJ 2004;328:E269
  1. Douglas Kamerow, editor

    It has been only a dozen years since the American Heart Association suggested that cardiac defibrillators, sophisticated instruments that previously required expert administration, could be made simple enough for lay bystanders to use safely to treat out-of-hospital cardiac arrest. Since then, “public access defibrillation” has spread in two directions. The automated external defibrillators (AEDs) that were developed in response to the AHA's challenge are now routinely given to police and fire first responders to use while awaiting ambulance and paramedic arrival. They have …

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