Common deficiencies cited by AAAASF and how to fix them — Every OR must be equipped with an AED or standard defibrillator

In our ongoing series, Becker's ASC Review spoke with American Association for Accreditation of Ambulatory Surgery Facilities' Director of Accreditation Jeanne Henry about the organization's commonly cited deficiency related to ensuring that every operating room is equipped with a standard defibrillator or automated external defibrillator.

Jeanne Henry: AAAASF ASC standard 200.061.013 requires every operating room be equipped with a standard defibrillator or AED unit. The unit must be checked at least weekly for operability and the results of that testing must be filed. AEDs satisfy the requirement of 416.44(c)(4) as long as the ASC's medical staff emergency policy specifically indicates that an AED is sufficient given the ASC's population and types of procedures.

When checking the operability of the AED or a standard defibrillator, always refer to the owner’s manual. Visual checks of the device may not be sufficient.

The most common cause for malfunctioning is a dead battery. The machines are equipped with non-rechargeable batteries that must be replaced every two to five years per the manufacturer's recommendation.

The pads also expire and must be replaced within two to four years, depending on the manufacturer. Both the pad that is attached to the machine as well as the spare pad should be replaced by the expiration date found on its packaging.

Registering your AED with the Atrus National AED Registry can help save lives in your community by letting participating emergency response agencies know where your AEDs are located so they can be found and used quickly when needed. The registry provides AED owners with resources for better maintenance and care of their AEDs free of cost.

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