Indiana may be fat but we can be safe

Dateline: Wed 09 Aug 2006

Fort Wayne Observed, a well-established blog, has posted a piece from a Harvard medical study about the importance of AEDs (defibs) in workplace settings.

Thank you, FWO. (To see the full posting, Click here:

This bee in my bonnet is not going to fly away anytime soon -- actually I think of it more as "fox-teeth of the mind," to paraphrase the great Tennessee Williams. My agitated brain funk is directly traceable to the death of Star shooter Mpozi Tolbert, 34, on July 3 in the Star newsroom. But it also has to do with the fact that my father died in the newsroom of The St. Louis Globe Democrat in 1949. Unlike Mpozi, he died instantly, a massive heart attack. I take death in the newsroom personally. So sue me.

People who want me to back off this topic should understand my position once and for all: Safety happens (tip of the hatlo to a current TV ad campaign). Sometimes, yes, people just die ... my father did... but Mpozi struggled to breathe. Help that should have been in place was not. Maybe he wouldn't have made it. Maybe he would have.

John O'Dea of NIFS, where I used to work out, pointed to three places in the gym where guys had gone down, with cardiac arrest, right on the floor. In all three instances, the men were brought around because IUPUI cares enough to provide AEDs on the premises and CPR training to its workers.

My sons work at OneAmerica Downtown. AEDs are hangin' on the walls. My older son Andrew has never worked in a setting without them -- from a small boutique software firm in Chicago to Discover to a bank.

Coming soon to this spot -- a survey of Indianapolis companies that are proactive in their safety policies.

I am not letting this go. Those of you who feel sad and angry that I am blaming you -- get over it, and let's concentrate less on feelings and more on action. Try some cognitive therapy -- act a cetain way and the feelings will follow. Demand improvements from the multi-million dollar media company. You will feel better about yourself when you get results.

As we used to say in the 60s, "the only way to get power is to take it."

FWO reported on AEDs in Fort Wayne and the Harvard study. (To see the full posting, Click here:

Or just check read my brief summary:

"Coliseum Director Randy Brown has done it," the post begins. "Republican Sheriff's candidate Ken Fries has done it.

"The 'it' is saving a person's life with the use of an AED or Automated External Defibrillator."

The overall context: failed debibs were associated with 370 deaths over the past decade. BUT "the devices have saved tens of thousands of lives, and the benefits outweigh the risk of malfunctions, study author Dr. William Mailsel said."


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