What are AEDs?
Automated external defibrillators are used to resuscitate a person in cardiac arrest. They can easily be applied by a non-medical bystander.
Time is crucial when it comes to resuscitations. Every minute, the chances to survive a cardiac arrest drop by 10%. A defibrillation must be applied as soon as possible.
Why should they be mandatory on airplanes?
On average an airplane needs 15-20 minutes from declaring a medical emergency until medical emergency personnel enters the plane after an emergency landing.
In the U.S. AEDs have been mandatory on most commercial airplanes for over a decade. Why aren't they required in the European Union? People suffering from a cardiac arrest have literally no chance to survive without an AED on board. We call on the EASA, the European Aviation Safety Agency, and the European Commission to make AEDs mandatory on commercial airplanes in the airspace of the European Union.
Only a short training is needed to be able to use AEDs. Under certain circumstances, even untrained persons can apply AEDs to resuscitate those in cardiac arrest. Flight attendants can easily be trained in applying AEDs. On most flights medical professionals are present as passengers.