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Automatic External Defibrillator (AED)

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Stony Brook University is committed to making sure individuals that suffer sudden cardiac arrest have the best chance of survival possible by placing over 250 AED units throughout Main Campus, South Hampton Campus, and University Hospital. AEDs are located throughout all Stony Brook campuses and generally located near main entrances or elevator lobbies.


Recognizing a Cardiac Arrest

DO NOT HESITATE. Immediately call 333 from any campus phone or 631-632-3333 from a mobile phone to call University Police.

If a person is not breathing or not breathing normal, start Hands-Only CPR. Get an AED or send a bystander to retrieve a unit and push hard and fast in the center of the victim’s chest until personnel with more advanced training arrives.

the image shows steps when performing cpr. call 911 push hard and fast in the center of the chest

Recognizing a cardiac arrest emergency is key to a person’s survival.


What is an AED?


An Automatic External Defibrillator, AED for short, is a small portable device that analyzes the heart rhythm of a person who is in cardiac arrest. It determines if the person is in a rhythm called Ventricular Fibrillation (VF). If the person is in VF, the AED will deliver a series of shocks that, depending on the circumstances, could convert the persons heart rhythm back to the normal rhythm and greatly increase their chance of survival. The goal, with the placement of AEDs in public places, is to have the unit applied and a shock delivered within three minutes. This statistic increases the chance that a cardiac arrest victim will walk out of the hospital from ten percent or less to sixty to seventy percent.


cpr being performed on a training dummy

Sudden cardiac arrest can occur at all ages. Sudden cardiac arrest is the sudden loss of all heart activity due to an irregular heart rhythm. Breathing stops. The person becomes unconscious.

The only successful treatment for a victim in cardiac arrest is early cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and defibrillation such as that provided by an automated external defibrillator (AED).

Defibrillation involves shocking the heart with an electric current that allows the heart to reestablish its normal rhythm. To be most effective, defibrillation must occur as soon as possible after the onset of sudden cardiac arrest. The chance of survival from sudden cardiac arrest decreases by 7-10 percent per minute.

Early recognition and starting steps of CPR is key for a victim suffering sudden cardiac arrest. AEDs are easy to use (by nonmedical personnel), are safe, and are effective in saving lives. 

Automatic External Defibrillator (AED) Training 

Several hundred employees, including University Fire Marshals, Police Officers, Athletic
coaches and trainers, and other staff have completed the training and are CPR/AED certified.

To schedule a training session, contact the University Fire Marshal’s office at 631-632-9678.

The Department of Environmental Health & Safety at Stony Brook University is responsible for coordinating and implementing the University’s Public Access Defibrillation Program. The program was developed as a result of the NYS Office of General Services (OGS) promulgation of regulations requiring all NYS owned/operated public buildings to be equipped with on-site cardiac automated external defibrillators (AED).

Unlike manual defibrillators used in hospital settings and by paramedics, the AEDs that are
installed throughout the University are extremely easy to operate. The devices use clear graphical and spoken instructions. The AEDs analyze the victim's condition and, only if warranted, deliver an electric shock to the heart to reverse sudden cardiac arrest.

You DO NOT need to be certified to use an AED: if you choose to assist someone you believe needs CPR and an AED, you will be covered under the Good Samaritan law.

However, CPR certification can be very important to know when using an AED. If the AED delivers an electric shock, the device will then prompt you to beginning administering CPR. Under the American Heart Association guidelines hands-on CPR should be administered until further trained help arrives.

More information about the NYS Good Samaritan law can be found in NYS Public Health Law Article 30.

For more information, please call the Fire Marshals office at (631) 632-9678.