Ardmore hospital donates life-saving gear to area schools - - No One Gets You Closer

Ardmore hospital donates life-saving gear to area schools

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ARDMORE, Okla. -- Ardmore City Schools nurse Renita Dotson said a hospital's donation of life-saving gear is the answer to her prayer.

Money to purchase automated external defibrillators for area schools was raised back in February at Mercy Hospital's "Wear Red" event to raise awareness of heart health.

This week, the automated external defibrillators (AEDs) were delivered to campuses in Ardmore and nine other districts.

Dotson said Ardmore schools lacked defibrillators in two facilities. "It turned out we ended up getting two, and it was exactly what we needed," she said.

Other districts awarded with new AEDs include Zaneis, Fox, Healdton, Oak Hall, Dickson, Lone Grove, Plainview, Wilson, and Springer.

While Oklahoma law does not require schools to have defibrillators, having them is recommended if funding is available.

Cardiologist Ruben Sunga Jr. said this technology can be crucial when dealing with a heart emergency.

"It is very important that public places, public institutions, have this device, because it is very effective and it is life-saving," Dr. Sunga said, noting that just six seconds without blood flow to the brain can cause irreversible damage.

An AED can reset the heart's electrical rhythm when it stops working properly by delivering an electric shock.

"It's very important that this malignant venticular electrical abnormality is identified rapidly," Dr. Sunga explained. "The AED is used because the sooner you can restore blood flow and cardiac output and normal heart rhythm, better is the chance of survival."

That chance of survival is exactly why Dotson said she is thankful for the new equipment.

"It's a life-saver, and we want to do everything we can to save our children, or even an adult that walks in our building," she said.

Dotson added that Ardmore City Schools now has an AED in all school buildings, including workout facilities.

Ardmore students return to class next Thursday, August 17.

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