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Staff at tallest building train to save lives

EMERGENCY equipment to treat victims of cardiac arrest has been installed in the nation's tallest building, the Shanghai World Financial Center in Pudong New Area.

Five Japanese doctors, some of whom had been involved in the 2005 Aichi Expo in Japan where AEDs, or automated external defibrillators, saved several lives, were at the center yesterday to train staff how to use the machines.

The Aichi Expo had 100 AEDs and they saved the lives of four of the five visitors who suffered heart attacks during the event, the doctors said at an emergency aid training lecture at the financial center.

The building has installed three AEDs and all its some 2,000 staff will be trained to use them.

According to the Shanghai Emergency Medical Center, there are hundreds of urgent cases in local high-rises every year. But in a survey it found it could take 10 minutes for first aid workers to arrive at the 20th floor or higher in an emergency. The first four minutes after any cardiac arrest is vital. After that a patient's chance of survival drops quickly.

The AED is a portable automatic device which restores normal heart rhythm after a sudden cardiac arrest. It is designed to be used by anyone after training.

"The AED is a useful machine to save patients before first aid professionals arrive," said Dr Liu Weidong, president of Punan Hospital, one of the lecture's organizers.

Experts called on the government and building owners to install the life-saving devices in more office buildings, hotels, shopping malls, transport hubs and the 2010 World Expo site.


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