What to do: Sudden Cardiac Arrest

Cardiac arrest is reversible in most victims if it’s treated within a few minutes. First, call 9-1-1 for emergency medical services. Then get an automated external defibrillator if one is available and use it as soon as it arrives. Begin CPR immediately and continue until professional emergency medical services arrive. If two people are available to help, one should begin CPR immediately while the other calls 9-1-1 and finds an AED.


  1. Can I be held responsible for using the AED to save a person’s life in a sudden cardiac arrest event, and the person does not survive:

No, Heartsine indemnifies ALL users of the Heartsine Samaritan AEDs.

In South Africa the law of delict refers. No one can be held liable when assisting in a medical emergency, even if the patient suffers further injury or even death. The courts will apply the “average reasonable person” rule.

  1. Can I use the AED on someone the has a pacemaker?

Yes, when a person, that has an implanted pacemaker, does go into sudden cardiac arrest, it means that the pacemaker is not working at all, and you must use the AED then to save the person’s life.

  1. Can I deliver an unnecessary shock to the person’s heart that is in cardiac arrest?

No, the Heartsine Samaritan AEDs are manufactured with an impendance cardiogram, that will assess the heart rhythm to determine if a shock is necessary or not.

  1. What will happen if I by accident press the shock button on the AED?

Should it happen that you by accident press the shock button, before the AED has instructed you to do so, a shock will not be delivered. A shock will only be delivered if the AED has instructed you to press the shock button, and then after you press the button. Thus meaning that you will never unnecessary deliver a shock to the person in cardiac arrest.

  1. What will happen if I forget to recharge the AED?

The Heartsine Samaritan AEDs Pad-Pak ( battery & pads are 1 unit), does not need to be recharged. The battery is a Lithium Manganese Dioxide battery that lasts for 4.5 years, and only needs to be replaced after usage or if not used, after 4.5 years. Your Heartsine Samaritan AED will always be ready to be used in a cardiac arrest.

  1. Do I need medical training to use the Heartsine Samaritan AEDs?

No, the Heartsine Samaritan AEDs are manufactured to be used by medical as well as non-medical persons.  Heartsine Samaritan AEDs have clear voice & visual prompts to follow, even a child of 15 years of age can use the AED with great success.

  1. Can I cause harm to the person in cardiac arrest heart when I use the AED?

No, the Heartsine Samaritan AEDs had been manufactured with the best biphasic waveform technology, to reduce further myocardial damages to the heart during a cardiac arrest.

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Cardiac arrest can happen to anyone at any time.