Representatives from Dallas-based Reliant Ministries, including Cheryl Chambers, Cynthia Redmond, Kaitlin Goldman, Kati McClellan and Criss Engles, receive their new AED from Tanner Heart Care team members Debbie Skellie, RN, and board-certified cardiologist Dr. Onaje Greene.

A Paulding-based church is among four local nonprofits keeping the safety of their visitors close to their hearts.

Reliant Ministries on Hiram-Sudie Road in Dallas joined First Baptist Church of Franklin, Pinetucky Baptist Church in Heflin, and the Refuge Ministries of West Georgia in Tallapoosa in receiving a free automated external defibrillator, or AED, from Tanner Heart Care.

The four organizations were among several throughout the region that submitted entries throughout March for Tanner Heart Care’s Heart Saver AED Giveaway.

A committee of cardiac experts reviewed the applications and chose the organizations based on need.

An AED is an essential tool when it comes to saving a life in an instance of sudden cardiac arrest, when a heart suddenly stops beating. Sudden cardiac arrest can occur after a heart attack, drowning, electrical shock or other potentially deadly situations.

AEDs include pads that can be applied to someone in cardiac arrest, and the device can monitor the person’s heart rhythm and administer an electric shock if necessary to get the heart back in rhythm.

Along with having an AED nearby, a key step in saving lives during instances of sudden cardiac arrest is widespread knowledge of cardiopulmonary resuscitation, or CPR.

In addition to the Heart Saver AED Giveaway, Tanner has also announced an upcoming series of Learning CPR is Easy sessions throughout the region. These free classes do not offer CPR certification, but they do teach the fundamental skills necessary to save a life using CPR.

Participants receive a mannequin and training DVD that they can take home with them, as well as instruction from emergency medical experts and the team of board-certified cardiologists at Tanner.

Representatives from the organizations that won an AED also attended the CPR training sessions, where they received their devices.


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