Programs and Activities
There are a number of programs Mended Hearts members raise funds for:
AUTOMATED EXTERNAL DEFIBRILLATOR (AED) PROGRAM/MANNEQUINS
One of the most successful Chapter 127 programs is that of raising funds through chapter activities and events to provide automated external defibrillators (AED’s) and mannequins throughout the Cookeville, Putnam County and Upper Cumberland area. Mended Hearts Chapter 127 has purchased and distributed more than 300 mannequins in Putnam and surrounding county schools. Mannequins are used to teach all high school students how to perform CPR and use an AED.
CARDIAC ARREST TREATMENT
Annually, nearly a quarter million Americans die of sudden cardiac arrest. What is cardiac arrest? Cardiac arrest is the sudden, abrupt loss of heart function. The victim may or may not have diagnosed heart disease. Sudden death (also called sudden cardiac death) occurs within minutes after symptoms appear. Quick action is essential in treating cardiac arrests because they may cause brain and heart damage. For each minute following a cardiac arrest, the probability of survival decreases about 7 percent. After 10 minutes, resuscitation is doubtful. This means immediate treatment is needed to restart the heart in order to survive. The best treatment for restarting the heart is defibrillation, a series of electrical shocks applied to the heart.
WHAT IS AN AED?
An automated external defibrillator, or AED, is an automated, computerized medical device that is capable of checking a person’s heart rhythm and, when necessary, providing an appropriate electrical shock that may “reset” the heart to an acceptable, normal rhythm.
It has been proven that if a person has some form of heart attack where there is an AED, and a knowledgeable person is available to administer a mild shock to re-establish a normal heart rhythm and circulation, that chances of survival are increased significantly (up to 80 percent).
AEDs are very accurate and easy to use, and they can advise a rescuer or trained person when a shock is needed. The AED uses voice prompts, lights and text messages to advise what steps to take and when.
Funding for purchase of the AEDs is accomplished through Mended Hearts Inc. Chapter 127 fund-raising events such as silent auctions and bake sales, as well as through private donations. In some cases, AEDs are provided through a cost-sharing program with recipient organizations in order to permit more AEDs to be placed throughout the community. Additionally, several businesses and organizations in the Cookeville area fully support the AED program and provide grants to assist in their purchase.
In support of Chapter 127 programs, a silent auction is held annually in Education Rooms 1, 2, 3 and 4 (East Entrance) in the Cookeville Regional Medical Center. Chapter members solicit local individuals, businesses and organizations for items that are to be donated for the auction.
Local merchants have been extremely supportive of the local chapter of Mended Hearts and are familiar with the many exceptional programs they offer.
Items are available for viewing and bidding throughout the day. The highest bidder is notified of their successful bid.
The major portion of proceeds from the silent auction goes toward the purchase of AEDs for the Cookeville and surrounding area.