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900 defibrillators due urgent checks

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Defibrillator: corrective actions remain outstanding.

Defibrillator: corrective actions remain outstanding.

Defibrillator: corrective actions remain outstanding.

All organisations with automated external defibrillators (AEDs) are being asked to urgently check that the recommended safety and maintenance updates on their device have been undertaken.

The medicines'watchdog, the Health Products Regulatory Authority, said it knows of some 940 defibrillators in Ireland, incorporating five particular models, where a corrective action remains outstanding.

Updates to these AEDs are needed immediately to ensure that the devices will work as necessary in a life-saving situation.

It warns that weather temperatures will affect a defibrillator's performance and all AED devices should be stored correctly and regularly checked during the winter months ahead.

Around 5,000 sudden cardiac deaths happen annually, with 70pc of all cardiac arrests occurring outside of the hospital environment.

While AEDs can improve a person's survival chances following sudden cardiac arrest, the watchdog says that if the defibrillator is not maintained, stored or serviced correctly, it may not work in an emergency.

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