'There were heroes right there.' AEDs and how they helped save Damar Hamlin

As Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin continues his recovery, people are becoming more aware of automated external defibrillators and how one was used to save his life.

Mark Sudol

Jan 13, 2023, 1:11 AM

Updated 518 days ago

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As Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin continues his recovery, people are becoming more aware of automated external defibrillators and how one was used to save his life.
Jared Becker, an EMT with AMR in Bridgeport, showed News 12 Connecticut how to use an automatic external defibrillator.
"It's very easy, it's simple to use. You put one sticker there. And we'll put the other one over here," said Becker.
The machine tells you what to do.
"And now it's telling you to deliver the shock," said Becker.
That electric shock and simple CPR can get the heart beating again in a normal rhythm.
"People can be intimidated just thinking about what's going on and what's happening. But once you open that AED up, you hit the on button it's going to talk you through everything," said Becker.
An AED and CPR were used on the field after Hamlin suffered cardiac arrest. It saved his life.
"The CPR was started immediately. There were heroes right there. They were able to take care of him," said State Senator Saud Anwar.
Doctor and Connecticut state Sen. Saud Anwar drafted Senate Bill 1083, which went into effect as a law in 2021. That law makes AEDs mandatory at sports clubs and gyms.
Staff members are required to learn how to use them.
"The awareness has increased, the understanding has increased and the laws that we have passed here in Connecticut, I am hopeful that the people across the different parts of the country will have similar laws to protect their citizens too," said Anwar.
Becker says if you don't use an AED in the first 3-5 minutes, a person's chance of survival decreases to 50%.
"If you're a business owner, it's well-worth the investment to have one of these and have your staff trained on it," said Becker.
Becker says effective CPR should be 100 to 120 compressions a minute.
The Red Cross has CPR and AED training.


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