Defibrillators ordered for schools

Once the paperwork is finished, some new medical equipment will make its way into Oak Harbor secondary schools.

In the coming weeks automatic external defibrillators will be placed at Oak Harbor High School, North Whidbey Middle School and Oak Harbor Middle School.

Before that can happen, the Oak Harbor School Board has to approve a policy governing the devices’ use and the district has to sign a contract with the North Regional EMS and Trauma Care Council, which is providing the equipment free-of-charge.

The school board approved the first reading of the policy during a school board meeting earlier this month.

Board member Dave McCool questioned whether the devices are worth the trouble of acquiring them.

“Is the benefit of these things worth all of the work to accept them?” McCool said.

Even though the school district hasn’t yet had an incident where one is needed, proponents say it’s worth having equipment handy that could save someone’s life.

“If you save one person then it’s worth it,” said Bruce Worley, school district operations director.

Prior to the board’s decision, school administrators had to make sure there are enough people properly trained to use the defibrillators.

Worley said at least five employees at each of the secondary schools have to be trained to use the equipment. Fortunately, there are approximately 40 people between the three schools that underwent CPR training that included defibrillator use.

The devices are portable and can be brought to athletic events should an emergency arise.

The only maintenance for the equipment is the batteries which have to be replaced every year and the school district would have to buy new pads every time the defibrillator is used.

We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus

Read the Oct 19
Green Edition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Browse the archives.

Friends to Follow

View All Updates