AED Discussion Page

NWTFC Members,

AED Training at Port Townsend Rally

At the Port Townsend Rally business meeting the issue of the club obtaining or renting an AED (Automated External Defibrillator) was discussed. It was decided to research the cost of doing so and the logistics of the club handling an AED. Sue Bjornson volunteered to research the costs. Here are her findings:


Information on AEDs

There are several companies who sell AEDs, some who rent them and they can also be found on ebay and Amazon.  According to the websites of the companies, there is only one AED that a person can buy that does not require a physician’s prescription and that is Phillips HeartStart OnSite.

The following information, including pricing, is as of 9-7-18. (Note: if purchased from ebay there probably won’t be a warranty for 3 or 8 years.)

Phillips HeartStart OnSite AED


  • To purchase NEW it is $1,275.00 from Phillips Healthcare

Standard carrying case
Adult SMART pads cartridge
Lithium battery (4-yr. warranty)
Review Express software
8-yr. warranty from Phillips Healthcare

  • To purchase a RECERTIFIED one (same model) it is $695.00 from

AED (recertified by an 11-point inspection process)
Standard carrying case
Adult SMART pads cartridge
Lithium battery (4-yr. warranty)
3-yr. warranty from


  1.  – minimum of 12 months at $75.00 per month
  2. – $150/day, $300/week or $450/month (rental deposit is additional $200 which will be returned when AED is returned)
  3. HeartSmart – Phillips – $125 for 1 day, $175 for 2 days, $245 for 1 week, $350 for 1 month, $525 for 3 months, $695 for 6 months 
  4. CPR Savers – 1-2 days for $99/day, 3+ days for $50/day, 7+ days for $35/day, 30+ days for $10/day; all rentals, regardless of days rented, require an initial payment of $750 at the time of booking, which will be handled as a deposit. The rental fee will be deducted from the deposit and the difference will be returned once AED is returned.

Now for the logistics:

A designated member would need to be responsible for storing the device, making sure it was charged, up to date, and all the equipment was included.

There would need to be arrangements made to insure the device attended each rally. This could incur shipping costs if the member holding the unit was not attending a rally.

At the rallies access would need to be available at all times. Would we leave it at the campground or take it along on any excursions attended by club members?

At this time, whenever Penny Paschall attends a rally she brings her AED. This is her personal device but she would make it immediately available if needed.

This is the information we have on the subject. We are posting this so that members can comment and make an informed decision. This topic has been a matter of discussion for some time and it feels like it is time to make a decision. Please make your comments below. If you need help doing so, please contact Mary at

This information will be available for comment and discussion for 30 days and then you will be asked to vote yeah or nay on obtaining an AED. There will also be an option for making a choice as to how it is obtained if we select to do so.

Mike Ashbridge
President NWTFC

18 thoughts on “AED Discussion Page”

  1. I think this is a fantastic idea especially given my age. I am retired Ski Patrol and understand how valuable it is to have one of these at hand when the need suddenly arises, and it is always suddenly. Looking over the data provided it is obvious renting is not an option due to cost followed by logistics. Outright purchase of one seems OK, however these things evolve and become outdated then needing replacement. Trade in credit is given which helps, however I feel the best way to stay up to date at a reasonable cost is to go with the purchase of a re-certified unit. Trade in allowance is still provided when it is upgraded, but even if/with a slightly more frequent trade in interval, the overall cost to provide a fully functional, state of the art, piece of emergency equipment in a readily available location is significantly reduced. Lets get it done before the need arises and we are still talking about it.

    1. The logistics?
      Before buying I think we need to find this “responsible” member who agrees to maintain it for… long?
      One concern, if AED goes on excursion, but some members stay at CG and it is needed there, now what? A second unit?
      Any legal issues if not available to all members in attendance?
      Bret, this is great for the heart attack victim, what about snake bites, lighting strikes, etc shouldn’t we provide for all possibilities?
      Yes, rental does not make sense.

  2. I am a retired physician, AND I watch a lot of TV, so that makes me even more of an expert. I also just went through this process locally for another organization.
    The logistics of having the device be available to a mobile organization is an interesting challenge. The original box in which my local device was shipped was well-constructed and durable, so best to keep the device in that packaging for shipment.
    The device needs to be opened, battery inserted, and initial checkout performed to ascertain that it is in working condition, and that self-test should be repeated after each shipping.
    Much comfort would be afforded if a class with demo can be arranged at a rally. The devices are highly automated and lead the user through proper setup and pad placement, including skin prep if needed, but seeing a demo is still a good learning experience, as the demo usually includes other aspects of basic life support. The classes are often available from a local Fire Department, and usually free unless professional certification is involved.

    Thomass Noel
    Paindoc on NWTFC

  3. I’m with Bret 100%. That is a big Ditto. The time to do this now. Nobody in this club is getting any younger. I think with 80 plus coaches in this club we should be able to find a responsible person to take care of the unit. That’s all part of the small stuff. First we need to get AED to the rally. Placement, Testing and training to follow.

    The AED can not be at all places at all times. It should stay at the base camp where the most people spend the most time. If your worried about snake bites or a lightning strikes don’t go in the bushes looking for your golf ball in Arizona and don’t go out of your rowboat during a lightning storm.

    We just had an AED class at Port. Townsend. Marina taught bye Jefferson County fire and rescue. The class was very successful and was attended by about 50 people. I think confidently a third of those people could now use that unit.

    Let’s not worry about the small stuff and get an AED now.
    I vote for a RECERTIFIED UNIT.

    Ron Mahugh

  4. Considering the initial price of the AED plus the cost of maintenance and the difficulty of managing the transfer of the instrument to the people organizing each rally, Bill and I believe there would be advantages to renting an AED for each rally. The cost of renting is not great, the instrument would be maintained by the owner and if the rally master or someone appointed by him/her would assume responsibility for renting and returning the AED there would not be the difficulty of making sure it would be close at hand in time of need. This is an attempt to make having one as convenient and as economical as possible.

    Just a thought.

    Paula Shull

  5. Ben & I bought our unit after the Concrete rally & the same discussion (around 2008?). Since that time we did not need to use it, but had to replace the battery & gel pad in June 2018 (the gel pad should have been replaced before that but I didn’t know that). We bought ours from Costco when they had a $200 discount (which they periodically do). With Ben gone, I’m obviously going to have to figure out how to self-administer it (probably not going to happen!). The only difference I can see between the new & used is the warranty length of time. I suggest getting a used one & figure out the logistics later. We’ve managed to manipulate the coffeepot & club sign logistics ok. I will continue to bring mine to the rallies I attend. Penny Paschall

  6. MHO,
    The cost of obtaining and maintaining an AED seems excessive to me considering our clubs finances.
    It would be a terrible thing to need one and not have one available but I am not asking the NWTFC to be responsible for keeping me alive.
    I also feel the logistics of handling the unit would be complicated and the responsibility, if we did have a unit, and it was not available when needed would be devastating to the person assigned to care for it.
    That is my two cents worth.
    Mike Ashbridge

  7. Purchase and maintenance/replacement costs are expensive and ongoing.
    Will rental cost be part of each rally participants cost?
    Who will pay required rental deposit?
    Logistics is a real problem.
    Local emergency personal are available and we have cell phones!
    Tom Schramm

  8. These units are available in ,probably, all communities where we hold rallies and Penny has hers at most rallies. During rallies we are all out in different directions so availability at a given time and place would be impossible to support. Based on this analysis I do not support purchasing/renting a unit. I had a heart attack in 1998 and a couple days later a double by pass operation. Important thing is to check blood pressure at least once a day and notify cardiologist when there is any significant deviation. Regarding age I am probably the oldest member in NWTFC. I do have a quality relationship with the Lord.

  9. Some of you know me through Trek Tracks, or from the July 2004 formation rally or one of Lee Keeler’s rallies, but I live in Florida, so you don’t see me often. I have been a member for a good number of years, even though I don’t have the opportunity of participating often. Here’s my two cents worth on this issue:

    I went through this same debate over a dozen years back with my (then) Good Sams Chapter. It boiled down not to what it would cost outright to purchase, but our ability as a scattered group of members to get it to every campout and if/when it might be needed, finding the caretaker of it and getting it to the person in need promptly. At large events (i.e., Area rallies, Conventions, etc.) there are generally trained EMS on hand for this kind of thing, but for small rallies like our chapter rallies, I don’t believe it is feasible (having it on-hand, and available when and where someone needs it). Your decision will have little impact on me, but I am in agreement with Bob Beers in this matter, and would vote NO.

  10. I am a retired firefighter/EMT. I think it is great for those that have the interst in the wellbeing of other club members. Personally, I would rather see people not focus on one aspect of emergency care, but take some training in emergency care of several areas, basic 1st aid, CPR, stroke care, etc. This would spread people trough out the group or groups at a rally, who are trained in some level of emergency care.
    The Fire Depts, and EMS in even remote areas are very well trained and surprisingly well equipped. Even with an AED, these are the pepole you will be turning your patient over to in a short time. Do the best emergency care you can and get Fire/EMS there to help asap.
    This is just my 10 cents.

  11. I recently posted an article from – a newsletter I subscribe to. I received the following from a non-member but thought I would post it here as he is an expert and I thought his comments were worth posting here.

    “I just read your recent article regarding AEDs. A timely topic. I’m a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist, and RVer, and have used these Units many times. A recent study showed that survival when A bystander uses an AED is TWICE the survival rate compared to waiting for the first responder to arrive. When the heart is in a lethal rhythm, the ONLY way to restore the heart beat is with an AED. And survival decreases with each minute waiting. They are kind of like fire extinguishers- you pray you never have to use it, but when needed there is no substitute. I personally purchased a unit and donated it to my church as well as my personal unit to travel with.

    Prices have become more affordable and they save lives!

    A directory and good signage to locate the available AED (before it is needed) is a great idea.

    Mark Hamelink
    2002 Safari Trek owner, Arkansas”

  12. I guess I find it hard to believe we are still talking about this. We should have one of these units available at our rallies and gatherings right now. Yes there are logistics involved, yada yada, but we are smart responsible people and can work that stuff out. We certainly cannot use the excuse “well it might be in the wrong place when it is needed” because the odds are much higher that it would be where we need it when we need it. I believe we should go with the refurbished unit right now, work on the details so that the unit is most often in the most likely place to be needed then pray it is never needed. Much better to be in a position to help 90% of the time than in a position unable to help 100% of the time.

  13. My question is since the AED will be mobile and potentially used in many different states. Have the various state legal requirements been examined? A quick look at the following website, ( that references state laws in the different states, I see that most all of them reference a physician and most required registering the unit with the EMTs. I don’t know if the Phillips system is exempted from these requirements. Do we not worry about the legal requirements, save the person then the chips fall? Just some food for thought.

  14. I will abstain and let the majority decide. However I believe we need to find “the person” sooner rather than later. I for one would not volunteer to be that person: 1) we do not attend enough rallies, 2) we are not close enough to hand it off to someone who would attend the rallies, 3) if the need arose and for some reason the unit didn’t save the person or wasn’t available, I would be devastated. Or if we were somehow remiss in charging the battery or replacing old gel pads, you should shoot me!

    It is asking a lot, and I don’t believe it is a small issue to figure out later.

    Just my thoughts.


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