MHHS presents AEDs to VFDs

Morristown-Hamblen Healthcare System recently presented automated external defibrillators (AEDs) to each Hamblen County Volunteer Fire Department. From left are MHHS President and CAO Gordon Lintz, East Hamblen County VFD Chief Ricky Purkey, South Hamblen County VFD Assistant Chief Dale Griffey, West Hamblen County VFD Chief Mark Hickman, North Hamblen County VFD Firefighter Jason Bunch, MHHS Heart, Lung and Vascular Center Coordinator Brad Richardson and MHHS VP and Chief Financial Officer Amy Herndon.

Morristown-Hamblen Healthcare System, a member of Covenant Health, recently presented automated external defibrillators (AEDs) to each Hamblen County Volunteer Fire Department.

The presentation was yet another effort by MHHS to advocate for health in the greater Morristown and Hamblen County community after identifying the need for rapid intervention and early defibrillation by the local volunteer fire departments.

“Our goal is to be a community partner in education and early intervention. The earlier the intervention, the better patient outcome,” Morristown-Hamblen Healthcare System President and Chief Administrative Officer Gordon Lintz said.

The unincorporated areas of Hamblen County are served by four volunteer fire departments – North, South East and West – which provide primary fire protection services to residents.

As cardiovascular disease has become the leading cause of death in Tennessee, rapid defibrillation and high-quality CPR within three minutes of a cardiac emergency provides individuals with the best possible chance for survival. Each year, approximately 300,000 cases of cardiac emergencies occur in the United States. AED’s are effective in saving lives when used in those first crucial moments.

While Morristown Hamblen EMS responds to emergencies as the primary EMS provider within the

community, volunteer firefighters equipped with the AEDs can help impact those suffering from a

cardiac emergency in the moments that matter the most.

The devices can restore normal heart rhythms in those suffering a cardiac emergency and instruct those

using them on the steps needed to insure proper use.

According to the American Heart Association, individuals suffering from sudden cardiac arrest see their

chances of survival decrease from 7 to 10 percent each minute that goes by without defibrillation.