Heart Defibrillators Donated to Town
Supervisor Anthony J. Santino, Councilman Edward Ambrosino, Councilman Bruce Blakeman and the Town of Hempstead are the grateful recipients of 50 automated external defibrillators (AEDS), which will be located at town parks, pools, beaches and senior centers. Santino announced the lifesaving initiative during a press event at Shell Creek Park in Island Park, joined by members of the Island Park Little League; Town of Hempstead Medical Director Dave Neubert, MD; St. Francis Hospital Vice President of Ambulatory Services Patricia Daye; Louise Spadaro, MD, Director of the Cardiac Outreach Program at St. Francis Hospital; Mercy Medical Center Executive Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer Ron Steimel; and Mercy Medical Center Director of Emergency Services Dr. Nenad Grlic.
“Defibrillators are often utilized by police, fire and other emergency personnel due to their proven ability to save lives,” stated Santino. “The Town of Hempstead commends St. Francis Hospital and Mercy Medical Center for partnering with us to provide this lifesaving equipment for town parks, beaches, pools and senior centers.”
Town personnel will receive specialized training on the proper use of the defibrillators. However, the devices also come with step-by-step instructions, so in the event of an extreme emergency, anyone can quickly learn the steps to help someone in cardiac arrest. What’s more, the devices – produced by Cardiac Science Corporation – include bilingual (Spanish/English) instructions, making them accessible to a broad population across the town. Earlier this year, town employees were able to save the life of a fellow coworker by performing CPR and using a defibrillator located nearby.
According to the American Heart Association, there are more than 350,000 reported cardiac arrest cases per year in the United States, and only 10 percent of those victims survive. In instances where a victim is immediately administered CPR and defibrillation, their chances of survival are doubled. What’s more, for every minute that a victim is in cardiac arrest without help, their survival odds are decreased by 10 percent.
“We appreciate the leadership and community outreach being provided by St. Francis and Mercy Medical Center in partnering with us on this important project,” said Town of Hempstead Medical Director Dave Neubert. “We already have 53 AED units strategically placed throughout the town, and this will double our capacity to make a truly life-saving difference on behalf of our citizens.”
“As an integral part of the community for more than a century, Mercy is highly committed to promoting the health and safety of local residents,” said Ron Steimel, Mercy’s executive vice president and CAO. “We are honored to help in providing this lifesaving equipment.”
“Having these potentially life-saving devices available at these venues will benefit residents and visitors of all ages in an emergency situation and having quick access to them is key to surviving a cardiac emergency,” said Louise Spadaro, MD, Director of the Cardiac Outreach Program at St. Francis Hospital.
The defibrillators – valued at $1,500 per device – were secured through a state contract by St. Francis Hospital and Mercy Medical Center, so there was no cost to the town.
“The Town of Hempstead is committed to keeping residents safe, and we thank St. Francis Hospital and Mercy Medical Center for providing us with these 50 defibrillators,” concluded Santino. “And while we hope that we never have to use any of these lifesaving devices, neighbors can rest assured that they will be close by at town parks, pools, beaches and senior centers in the event of an emergency.”