OSHA urges consideration of AEDs at the workplace

December 17, 2001

In a move that may mark a new chapter in defibrillation readiness, the U. S. Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has issued an advisory statement urging employers to consider placing AEDs (automated external defibrillators) at workplaces.

"AEDs are easy to use and can make the critical difference in reviving individuals who suffer a cardiac crisis," said OSHA administrator John L. Henshaw. In 1999 and 2000, 815 of 6,339 workplace fatalities reported to OSHA resulted from cardiac arrest. Workers involved in shift work, holding high stress jobs or exposed to certain chemicals or electrical hazards face a higher risk of heart disease and cardiac arrest.

To assist businesses, OSHA has developed a fact card and a technical information bulletin on cardiac arrest and AEDs. The purpose of these materials is to provide information and is not intended to impose any legal obligations or constraints on employers.

For the OSHA fact card, click here.

For the OSHA technical information bulletin, click here.

For more information, click here or call OSHA at 1-800-321-OSHA.