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What’s the Price of a Sudden Cardiac Arrest?


13% of all workplace fatalities result from Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA)Cardiac Arrest in the Workplace

According the American Heart Association, 400,000 to 460,000 die each year (1,306 each day) of cardiac arrest, and 13 percent of these deaths are in the workplace.

Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) happens when heart function ceases abruptly and without any warning.  When this occurs the heart is no longer able to pump blood to the rest of the body, and death will occur without intervention. 

Cardiac arrest costs Americans $2.2 billion in direct hospital costs; the indirect costs to the family and employer are multiples of this. These deaths cost the workplace in insurance premiums, lost productivity, and other direct and indirect costs. In studies conducted by The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), a death costs the employer 175 percent of that worker's annual salary, just for replacement.

While we all have the best intentions, calling 911 and waiting for the arrival of emergency medical help results in only 5-7% survival.  Studies have shown that with immediate defibrillation the survival rate is increased to 60% one year after sudden cardiac arrest.

What employers can do:

CREATE awareness in the workplace of the following SCA risk factors;

  • History of early heart disease, heart attack, or cardiac death in the family;
  • Unexplained fainting or near fainting after palpitations;
  • Chest pain, shortness of breath, or fainting with exertion during heavy activity or lifting;
  • Heart failure or heart attack;
  • Weak heart muscle or a “low cardiac Ejection Fraction (EF)” – EF is the percentage of blood that is pumped out of the pumping chamber during each heartbeat.  Low is less then 40 percent;
  • Other cardiac risk factors, including high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, smoking and high cholesterol

PREPARE: Equip your workplace with accessible Automatic External Defibrillators (AEDs).  Defibrillation within three minutes lifts the chance of SCA victim’s survival to more than 70 percent. 

TRAIN your employees in both CPR and in the use of your AEDs.

CALL 911 in the event of an emergency, so the professionals can pick up where your workers leave off.

Experts believe that 100,000 lives could be saved each year if automated external defibrillators (AEDs) were widely used. Contact your Arbill representative for information about Emergency Response processes and products.  Subscribe to our Safety Blog for continuous safety tips and be sure to visit for more information on how to build a culture of safety within your organization.


While this may be a commercial site, I cannot agree more. I have been a professional paramedic for over 30 years, and had many cardiac arrests. While an arrest at the workplace is not very common, the results are devastating. The victim is often at the maximum earning potential, often very valuable to the company. The personal loss to the family and friends goes without saying. Early CPR (compression only) and early defib are easy, very little risk to the individual doing them, and will be lifesaving. It used to be to older and infirm that had sudden cardiac arrest, but not so much anymore Now it is the 50's 60's age person, with a history of smoking, often obese. A little training and capital investment may very likely save a life.
Posted @ Monday, February 18, 2013 10:47 AM by Gill Hall
A question or two: Without putting an AED in every office (some of our offices are only 5 people), what is the 'right' size of office for use of an AED? 40? 100? 200? etc. I've worked in many offices, big and small, and have only seen one incident of heart attack in a very large building in which I worked. Perhaps an AED for every building rather than every office? Help, as this could get very expensive. 
Posted @ Sunday, March 24, 2013 10:15 AM by Paul Hemsley
It was really a good news for all of us.I am eagerly waiting for that time.Thanks for sharing.Thanks.
Posted @ Sunday, July 28, 2013 4:49 AM by
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