An automated external defibrillator (AED) is the only effective treatment for restoring a regular heart rhythm during sudden cardiac arrest and is an easy to operate tool for anyone with little to no medical background.
Studies have shown that during a cardiac arrest if the victim receives defibrillation within three minutes, the chances of survival increase by as much as 25%!
There are more than 1.2 million AEDs in public places in the United States, and about 180,000 more are installed each year. That’s great news, but it would be even better if 911 operators and members of the public could easily access a database of AED locations to get help for cardiac arrest victims faster.
That’s where the Portland Metro HeartMap Challenge comes in. Conducted by OHSU’s Department of Emergency Medicine, the Portland Metro HeartMap Challenge is a month-long community scavenger hunt encouraging citizens to map AEDs in the four metro area counties – Clackamas, Multnomah, and Washington Counties in Oregon and Clark County in Washington – so they can be found more quickly in an emergency.
The challenge runs November 15th to December 15th with registration now open, and we’re asking for your help to make it a success.
Register as a team or an individual and then report any AEDs you find in your community on the contest website for a chance to win cash prizes. We want to map them all in our database so make sure to report AEDs at your place of work, where you shop, in public buildings, at the airport, or anywhere you see them in the community. A $10,000 grand prize will be awarded to the individual or team that identifies the most unique AEDs!
And most importantly you will be helping to make your community safer by locating AEDs and raising awareness that anyone can use one safely. To participate—and for the complete set of rules—visit the Portland Metro HeartMap Challenge website.
Mohamud Daya, M.D., M.S. is an Associate Professor of Emergency Medicine at OHSU. His specialty is emergency medical care with a focus on out-of-hospital care.