Scarborough, Maine-based Hannaford Supermarkets has announced that all 185 stores will have available automated external defibrillators in recognition of American Heart Month. Installation of the devices is underway.
Recognized as a life-saving device during the event of sudden cardiac arrest, AEDs are lightweight, portable devices that deliver an electric shock through the chest to the heart. The shock can potentially stop an irregular heartbeat and allow a normal rhythm to resume following sudden cardiac arrest.
Hannaford employees will receive hands-on training on best practices with a special focus on safety for customers and employees. This is in partnership with Cardio Partners, one of the nation’s largest providers of AEDs. The grocer also supports a number of AEDs throughout its corporate campus in Scarborough.
“All of us at Hannaford are deeply committed to extending care to our customers and associates,” said Bob Hatem, Hannaford Supermarkets director of operations, who is leading the AED installation alongside other retail leaders.
“We recognize that our stores are not immune to instances of cardiac arrest. Having AEDs readily available and ensuring our associates are trained on their deployment is an important step in protecting the heart health of the individuals in our stores.”
According to the American Heart Association, sudden cardiac arrest is a leading cause of death in the U.S. More than 350,000 cardiac arrests occur outside of the hospital each year. AEDs make it possible for non-medical people to respond to a medical emergency where defibrillation is required.
“We commend Hannaford Supermarkets for being a community leader when it comes to the heart health and safety of its customers and associates,” said Brian Shankey, executive director for the American Heart Association in Northern New England.
“AEDs are a vital link in the chain of survival for someone suffering from sudden cardiac arrest. Having AEDs available in public locations make them more quickly accessible, and thereby, able to save more lives.”
For more information about heart health and AEDs, visit heart.org.