Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Workplace Defibrillator Guidelines to Save Lives

Canberra, Thursday 29 November 2012: In a bid to improve safety in all Australian workplaces and counter  the incidence of cardiac arrest, new guidelines for the proper deployment and use of Automated External Defibrillators (AED) were unveiled today by The Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations, Financial Services and Superannuation, The Hon. Bill Shorten MP.

Leader of the Opposition, The Hon. Bill Shorten MP launched the defibrillator guidelines in November 2012

The establishment of the AED Deployment Register (AEDDR), a new national policy authority and regulatory body, was also announced at an official launch in Canberra today.

Leader of the Opposition, The Hon. Bill Shorten MP with cardiac arrest survivor Robin Dodds

Cardiac arrest is the leading cause of sudden death in Australia, ahead of prostate cancer, bowel cancer, breast cancer and road deaths. Many lives could be saved with the use of an Automated External Defibrillator.

While there has been a proliferation of AEDs in the workplace there has been a lack of adequate instruction and safeguards and unfortunately there have been many fatalities resulting from malfunctioning or poorly deployed devices.

According to US research, more than 21% of nearly 386,000 defibrillators surveyed between 1996 and 2005 were made so defective by electrical, software and other problems that they could not defibrillate a victim when needed. In Australia, the number of deployed AEDs is not even known, let alone their level of reliability.
The AEDDR has developed Australia’s first guidelines on the proper deployment of defibrillators. The Defibrillator Guidelines are designed to provide minimum compliance
standards and a certification programme for AEDs in Australia.

Minister for Employment Senator Eric Abetz with AEDDR Secretary, Ms Sophie York and AEDDR President Dr Graeme Peel

The new guidelines governing the use and application of AEDs will contribute to a safer workplace for all Australians.

Former Qantas Chief of People Safety and AED Deployment Registry President Dr Graeme Peel said cardiac arrest is the leading killer in western society and AEDs are critical to survival.
“Government and business workplace managers will welcome clear and concise directions which establish best practice standards on the use and maintenance of AEDs,” said Dr Peel.
“The only thing worse than not having an AED; is having an AED that doesn’t do the job when it is needed.

“Our long term goal is to have workplace regulatory bodies across Australia mandate these guidelines. In the US in 2000 for example, President Bill Clinton mandated that AEDs were to be required in all Federal buildings,” said Dr Peel.


Minister for Employment Senator Eric Abetz with Mr Paul Fletcher MP, Member for Bradfield; Ms Kirsten Livermore MP, Member for Capricornia; Mr Daryl Melham MP, member for Banks

Based in Canberra, the AEDDR is a not for profit organisation which has been established to ensure that AEDs throughout Australia meet standards of safety, reliability, effective capability and ease of use. It will also ensure that all associated training is effective, of a high quality standard and delivered with sufficient regularity and efficiency so that users in the workplace and elsewhere will be enabled to confidently save lives. Today’s launch was also attended by Shadow Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations Eric Abetz.
The AEDDR will be funded through the sales of the guidelines and AED registrations.

Guidelines can be purchased via the AEDDR website:
For further information please contact:
Trudy Wise or Stephen Naylor
Wise McBaron Communication
02 9279 4770