Delhi Metro installs equipment to handle cardiac arrests

Delhi Metro Rail Corporation installed Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) on Thursday at two of its busiest stations – Central Secretariat and Kashmere Gate - to provide emergency medical care if a passenger suffers from a cardiac arrest.

“At least one incident of medical emergency in a month is witnessed in DMRC. The AEDs will be of great use particularly at a crowded station. We have started with two stations. Later, we will provide this facility to other Metro stations as well,” Anuj Dayal, Metro spokesperson said.

The AEDs have been installed by the Opto Circuits (India) Ltd, a manufacturer of medical equipment and interventional devices, for free. Explaining the mechanics of the instrument, Arindam Sen, CEO of Opto Circuits (India) Ltd said the AED is a portable electronic device that automatically diagnoses a potentially life-threatening cardiac arrest in a patient.

“The medical equipment treats patients through defibrillation - the application of electrical shock to allow the heart to re-establish an effective rhythm,” Sen said.

However, the DMRC and OCIL officials said they would work out the modalities in terms of economic feasibility of installing such instruments at other stations in future. The cost of the AEDs varies from Rs 1-2 lakh.

Displaying the functioning of the instrument, the company officials said even a layman can use the instrument by just following the instructions. However, initially a core team would be trained to use the apparatus.

The medical experts said the first three minutes in case of cardiac arrest is very crucial and such apparatus could substantially increase the chances of survival of people in need.

“Use of such certified instruments increases the chance of survival to around 50 per cent which is as low as 10 per cent if such immediate medical care is not rendered to patients in need,” said Vanita Arora, senior consultant cardio electro physiologist, Max Hospital.

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