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Heart defibrillators: don’t be afraid to use them

About 9,000 people a year suffer a sudden cardiac arrest in Belgium, with 17 to 30% of these dramatic events taking place in public areas.

More and more Automatic External Defibrillators (AEDs) are being placed in public areas, to allow members of the public to administer an electric shock as quickly as possible. However, the impact of these devices on cardiac arrest mortality is limited.

After all, you have to know where to find an AED and not be afraid to use one. These devices are simple, however: all instructions are given verbally. Administering a shock is essential to restarting the heart. However, the shock of a defibrillator is not always enough to save the victim. Other actions, a swift intervention and good coordination are required: mout-to-mouth, calling the emergency services (112), providing assistance, etc.

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