How Many AEDs Should a Facility Have?

AED defibrillator sign

When businesses, nonprofits, and government entities invest in Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs), they are often puzzled about how many to place in their facility. The answer is not what you might expect, because it’s not determined by facility square footage or number of employees. The American Heart Association correctly recommends that AED placement be determined by response time. The AHA guideline is to accomplish “drop-to-shock” in 3 minutes. This means that from any location in the building where a victim may drop to cardiac arrest, a responder can get from the victim to the closest AED and back, begin powering on the device and placing the pads so that a shock can be delivered in 3 minutes. The notion that response time matters makes perfect sense when you learn that a defibrillation shock delivered in 3 minutes means about a 70% chance of survival for the victim. To further illustrate this point, a shock at 8 minutes yields only a 20% chance of survival, and at 15 minutes the likelihood of revival is less than 5%.

Beyond determining the right number of AED devices, here are few recommendations for optimum placement:

  1. Placement of AEDs should be visible and prominent.
  2. Alarmed cabinets can help protect against device theft and also raise awareness of an emergency.
  3. 3D or triangular AED signs help employees see where AEDs are located.
  4. Most AED cabinets are white, which tend to blend with walls but the stainless steel or circular ROTAID cabinets from certainly stand out!
  5. Denote your AED placements on your emergency evacuation maps.
  6. All AEDs should have a rescue kit which includes scissors to cut clothing, a razor to shave chest hair, and a CPR-mask to aid CPR compressions and rescue breaths.

We trust these recommendations from were helpful, and we’d be honored to assist you with a proposal for a well-designed AED program. Call us at 855-677-2337 or email for a free consultation and a quote!