Hospital needs defibrillators, volunteers

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has notified all Automated External Defibrillator (AED) and professional defibrillator owners, users and prescribers that effective Feb. 3, 2021, accessories for non-FDA approved AEDs and professional defibrillators will no longer be supported by the manufacturer.


While the AEDs that the Hermann Area District Hospital has today will be supported, the hospital has three defibrillators that need to be replaced soon.


“The defibrillators that need to be replaced are critical to our operation,” said Dan McKinney, administrator for HADH. “These units are located in surgery, the emergency room, and medical/surgical area.  We presently have only one defibrillator that will meet the new FDA standards.”


 The cost to replace three defibrillators is $39,000.  The hospital's auxiliary has agreed to donate$20,000 towards the purchase of the defibrillators, leaving a balance of close to $19,000 for the hospital to pay.


“Our funding could be running hundreds of thousands of dollars short this year with Medicare reimbursement, while this (coronavirus) pandemic is going on," McKinney added.


“We are happy to contribute where we can, but our funds are low right now also," said Anne Althauser, the auxiliary's president. "With this virus outbreak, it’s important to have current equipment on hand. I just wish we could do more. Our hospital is vital to the Hermann community, and I’m hoping folks will step up and help.”


The current circumstances from the pandemic underline the need.


“If the situation should arise that we are inundated with COVID-19 patients, this equipment could help us save lives," said McKinney. "Also, we would need medical volunteers to help support new patients."


Those who would like to be on standby to volunteer during the crisis should contact the hospital's administrative office at (573) 486-2019. Those with questions, or who would like to help by donating money toward the purchase of defibrillators, should contact McKinney at (573) 486-2191 or by emailing Donations can also be mailed to Hermann Area District Hospital, Attn:  Dan McKinney, Administrator, P.O. Box 470, Hermann, MO 65041. Please make a note in the memo field that specifies “defibrillators.”