Having an AED is a critical step to providing a safe work environment. This article outlines how you can get the most out of your AED Inspection Program.
Did you know that 22% of AEDs in the market will not work due to poor maintenance? While defibrillators (AEDs) are commonplace today, too often, AEDs that have expired pads, expired batteries, have a recall pending, contain old software and even AEDs that were never taken out of their original packaging. While having an AED is a critical first step, properly inspecting your units could mean the difference in a life-or-death situation. Here are some of the common traps you should avoid when implementing an AED inspection program.
So, you inspected your AED, now what? A common trap for DIY safety managers is that they inspect their AEDs but forget to document the inspection. Even the largest AED inspection companies in the country tout their “online portal” but do not connect the dots between the inspection and their technology, ultimately relying on you to perform the inspection yourself. As any seasoned safety professional knows… no document = no inspection.
There are a limited number of service providers out there that can connect inspections in your facility with an online management portal. This provides real-time feedback on your device inspections and historical reporting. Once your device is setup in their system and scanned during the inspection the data is immediately loaded into a real-time portal giving you visibility across AED types and locations.
Having multiple AED brands in a facility can pose many challenges to your inspection program. The only way to truly know if your AED ready to use is by inspecting the device to the manufacturer’s specifications. This requires the inspector to have working knowledge of recall history, battery & pad expiration, preforming a self-test and running a diagnostic on all your devices.
We recommend sticking to one brand of AED within your facility. This cuts down on the need to train your staff on more than one device. Moreover, there are AED inspection companies that can inspect nearly any device with service technicians that are trained to manufacturers inspection requirements.
It is important to keep in mind AEDs are very durable devices however all units contain components that will eventually expire. Batteries expire in most AEDs because they are constantly running self-tests in the background to ensure the device is working. Pads expire, typically, to avoid the adhesive on the pad from drying out. These components if not properly accounted for can be hard to install and cost hundreds of dollars.
It never hurts to call the manufacturer to get more information on your device. However, most manufacturers will not sell replacement parts to end users. Our recommendation is to find an AED inspection company that can take care of all of this for you at one time. Very often these companies will include all replacement parts and the inspections for a flat rate.
Implementing an AED inspection program can be an added cost on your budget no doubt about it. Whether you are doing it yourself or paying an inspection company it is important to keep a few things in mind. If you are doing it yourself consider the total time investment you are committing. If you are paying a third party, make sure you understand your contract. Too often we see customer paying for a “flat rate” AED program only to find out they are also being charged for the inspections on top of the device.
Review your contract if you have one. Understand what you are being charged for and what you are entitled to. Some of the biggest inspection companies “tout” an all-inclusive program only to find out they are being charged for not only the device but inspections as well.
A defibrillator is the most important device in your facility. It is truly a matter of life and death that it is inspected and ready to use when called upon. Most companies spend far more money on their coffee than they do on their AED inspection program. It is our belief at Crane Safety that we have the most comprehensive AED management and inspection program in North America our service helps you ensure your device is regularly inspected while our technology tracks your inspection records and makes it readily available.