JACKSON COUNTY, OR. – Local and surrounding communities are invited to join a life-saving scavenger hunt to identify AEDs (automatic external defibrillators) in Jackson County starting on February 1st and running through February 28th.
Jackson County ambulance, emergency medical services (EMS) and fire agencies are hosting Jackson County HeartMap Challenge, an AED scavenger hunt that aims to build public awareness about their use, effectiveness and to build a comprehensive database of device locations. Registration for the challenge is open to individual participants or teams. Prizes range from $50 to $10,000.
Automatic external defibrillators are small electronic devices designed to allow bystanders to assist during a cardiac arrest before emergency medical responders arrive. Each device has voice and visual prompts that guide bystanders through the necessary steps to save a life. AEDs are often placed in schools, businesses, airports, gyms and shopping malls, according to Paul Rostykus, MD, MPH ,the EMS Medical Director for the Jackson County ambulance and fire agencies and for 9-1-1 (ECSO).
“Our list of AED locations is incomplete. We are seeking the public’s help to learn where more of these devices are located,” said Dr. Rostykus. The list of public access AEDs located in Jackson County will be able to be used by the 9-1-1 (ECSO) dispatcher to help bystanders at a cardiac arrest find the nearest AED. “Cardiac arrest is a leading cause of death in the United States, which can often be survived if quickly responded to with bystander CPR and an AED,” Dr. Rostykus said. “AEDs are simple to use. After starting CPR, locate the AED, turn it on, then follow the voice and visual prompts. AEDs will provide a shock only when needed.” ￼
The contest is being held in collaboration with the University of Washington-Harborview Center for Prehospital Emergency Care, which is sponsoring similar contests across the country to build a national registry of AEDs. The location information in the registry will be updated periodically so that the public can receive accurate information about where these devices are at the time of cardiac arrest.
Here are basic rules of the game:
To participate in the contest, individuals or teams complete the free registration online at www.heartmap.uwctc.org.
The contest starts Wednesday, February 1 and ends Tuesday, February 28.
When you locate an AED in Jackson County, report a brief description of it on the contest website, including the building address for the AED, its location within the building, and whether the device appears to be ready for use.
The HeartMap Jackson County Challenge enlists the public to locate the life-saving devices in Jackson County through the month of February.
A $10,000 grand prize will be awarded to the individual or team that identifies the most number of unique AEDs. “Unique” means a player or team has to be the first to find the AED for it to count towards a score.
Jackson County HeartMap Challenge is funded locally by the Darby Heart Fund and West Family Foundation. The collaborating sponsors include: the University of Pennsylvania, and University of Washington, and the American Heart Association.
You can follow Jackson County HeartMap on twitter (@cprnation,#JacksonCountyHeartMap) or at cprnation.org).