Automated External Defibrillator (AED) Program Transitions

Spring-Newsletter-Photo2.jpgSince its inception, the UH Police Department has maintained the Automated External Defibrillator (AED) program. On April 4, 2023, the AED program transitioned from the UH Police Department to the Fire and Life Safety (Fire Marshal’s) Office.

All current AEDs will continue to be inspected and maintained as before. The Fire and Life Safety Office is developing an AED website with location maps, FAQs, and training links. Please direct all inquiries regarding AEDs to Fire and Life Safety Technician Sara Walker, , or 713-743-0834.

What is an AED, and what does it do?
The AED is an electronic device that delivers a lifesaving pulse of electricity to restore the rhythm of a fibrillating heart. Sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) can happen anywhere and anytime to people of all ages.

SCA is usually caused by an electrical malfunction that makes the heart twitch ineffectively in an abnormal rhythm resulting in loss of blood flow throughout the body. This erratic, uncoordinated electrical activity is called fibrillation, and the most common is ventricular fibrillation.

The person suffering from SCA loses consciousness very quickly, and death follows in minutes unless the condition is reversed. A heart attack sometimes triggers SCA, but it can also happen without any blockage of blood flow to the heart. An AED contains a microprocessor that will analyze the heart rhythm and advise the operator if a shock-able rhythm is detected.

The AED will then charge to the appropriate energy level and advise the operator to deliver a shock. The electrical impulse stuns the heart muscle, which allows it to resume beating effectively. Early defibrillation is a nationally recognized standard of care, and AEDs are a proven method of reducing morbidity and mortality from victims who experience SCA.