Cardiac Ready Community Program Gains Momentum

While the Cardiac Ready Community program works its way through garnering legislative support, communities in North Dakota are implementing elements of the program to ensure more lives can be saved from sudden cardiac arrest and heart attack.  The pilot program enabled the town of Powers Lake to purchase 30 AEDs and train community members in bystander CPR.  Now other communities are identifying how Cardiac Ready Communities can help save lives in their communities.  Recently, the Trail County Tribune posted the following story about their plans to make their community - cardiac ready! 

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From the Traill County Tribune, James R. Johnson

The Mayville-Portland Economic Development Committee supports a program that will provide the two cities with AEDs and offer free CPR training.  

The Cardiac Ready Community program comes from the American Heart Association.  Doris Vigen, Sanford director of nursing, told the Jan 5th meeting of the MPEDC board that North Dakota's pilot project supplied 30 AEDs to the town of Powers Lake, and the idea is spreading to other communities. 

A Committee that includes Vigen and West Traill Ambulance President Stefan Hofer is working on a 3-year plan to lay out the placement of AEDs.  The targets for 2017 include both senior centers, Aurdal Lutheran Church, and Our Lady of Peace Catholic Church.  Businesses will be contacted to have an AED installed and have staff trained on how to use them. 

AEDs are used in cases of cardiac arrest to restore the heart's rhythm, while CPR maintains blood flow from the heart to the body's organs.  Hofer noted Bruce Karlstad, whose life was saved in March 2016 because Mandi Domier knew CPR, which kept Karlstad alive until Hofer arrived with an AED.  

Hofer said the cost of each AED is a little less than $2000.  He said some of the county mill levy could go toward them as well, but that financial assistance would help with AED maintenance.  He's also working on a schedule of free CPR training classes that will be taught by Becky Gunderson. 

MPEDC directors moved to give $10,000 to West Traill Ambulance for the benefit of the Cardiac Ready Community program  The board will also match up to $5000 for businesses in Mayville and Portland who want an AED on their premises and have staff trained. 

The board will also have a map designed for to pinpoint the locations of AEDs in the two cities.  Vigen and Hofer say the plan is to add Clifford, Galesburg, Hatton, and Finley and Sharon to the Cardiac Ready list.  

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