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Board Policy 5168 - Automated External Defibrillators

I. Policy Statement

The Board of Education of Prince George’s County (Board) believes that students, employees and visitors should have access to immediate first aid and 911 emergency services when experiencing sudden cardiac arrest (SCA.) Prince George’s County Public Schools (PGPCS) will have an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) program in place at all PGCPS schools and facilities and a venue-specific emergency action plan in place for each middle and high school.

II. Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to provide guidelines for the management and administration of PGCPS AED program and the development of venue-specific emergency action plans for middle and high schools.

III. Definitions

  1. Automated External Defibrillator (AED) – A medical heart monitor and defibrillator device that is:
    1. cleared for market by the federal Food and Drug Administration;
    2. recognizes the presence or absence of ventricular fibrillation or rapid ventricular tachycardia;
    3. determines, without the intervention by an operator, whether defibrillation should be performed;
    4. in determining that defibrillation should be performed, automatically charges; and
      1. requires operator intervention to deliver the electrical impulse; or
      2. automatically continues with the delivery of electrical impulses.
  2. Automated External Defibrillator (AED) Program – A plan for providing AED services that comply with all State of Maryland certification requirements.
  3. Registered facility – An organization, business, association, or agency that meets the requirements of the Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Board for providing automated external defibrillation. A registered facility may include multiple sites.
  4. School-sponsored athletic event – An interscholastic or intramural sporting event that takes place on the grounds of a middle or high school, including practices and scrimmages.
  5. Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) – A sudden cessation of cardiac activity such that the victim becomes unresponsive with no normal breathing and has no signs of circulation (e., movement, coughing, and pulse).
  6. Venue-specific emergency action plan – A plan that sets forth provisions for the operation and use of AEDs for all athletic facilities.

IV. Standards

  1. Public Access Automated External Defibrillator Program
    1. The Chief Executive Officer (CEO)/designee shall be responsible for the development and implementation of an AED Program that meets all of the requirements of Education Article 13-517 of the Annotated Code of Maryland for all schools and office buildings.
    2. For PGCPS to operate an AED Program, it shall possess a valid certificate from the Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Board registering PGCPS with the Public Access Automated External Defibrillator Program.
    3. To qualify for a certificate or renewal of registration, PGCPS must:
      1. Comply with the written protocol approved by the EMS Board for the use of an AED which includes notification of the emergency medical service system through the use of 911 as soon as possible on the use of an AED;
      2. Establish AED maintenance, placement, operation, reporting, and quality improvement procedures as required by the EMS Board;
      3. Maintain each AED and all related equipment and supplies in accordance with the standards established by the device manufacturer and the federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA);
      4. Ensure that each individual who is expected to operate an AED for a PGCPS school or facility has successfully completed an educational training course and refresher training as required by the EMS Board and is informed of the immunities available (see section IV.A.4. below);
      5. Designate an AED coordinator who shall:
        1. Have successfully completed the required CPR and AED training, and subsequent refresher training;
        2. Be responsible for implementing and administering the AED Program for PGCPS; and
        3. Ensure that monthly safety inspections of all supplemental and AED equipment are conducted and written logs are maintained of the inspections.
      6. Provide information regarding the operation, maintenance, and location of the AEDs in all schools and office facilities to all individuals employed by or volunteering at a PGCPS school or office.
      7. Make a determination about the number of AEDs located in each building based on the number of students attending the school and staff working in the school; the structure of the building; and the data indicating the probability of AED usage.
      8. Place all AEDs in locations that are visible and readily accessible to any person operating the AED in the event of a SCA;
      9. Have a telephone or other communication service available at all times for calling 911 at each school or facility at which an AED is operated;
      10. Submit data or other information concerning the AED Program which may be periodically requested by the Maryland Institute for Emergency Medical Services Systems (MIEMSS) and
      11. Provide training to all staff regarding the use of AEDs on an annual basis.
    4. Immunity from Civil Liability
      1. In addition to any other immunities available under law, the Board/PGCPS will not be civilly liable for any act or omission in the provision of automated external defibrillation if PGCPS has met the above requirements and possesses a valid certificate at the time of the act or omission.
      2. In addition to any other immunities available under law, an individual is not civilly liable for any act or omission if:
        1. the individual is acting in good faith while rendering automated external defibrillation to a person who is a victim or reasonably believed by the individual to be a victim of a SCA;
        2. the assistance or aid is provided in a reasonably prudent manner; and
        3. the automated external defibrillation is provided without fee or other compensation
      3. These immunities are not available if the conduct of PGCPS or an individual amounts to gross negligence, willful or wanton misconduct, or intentionally tortious
  2. Venue-Specific Emergency Action Plan
    1. Each middle school and high school shall develop a venue-specific emergency action plan for the operation and use of AEDs at all of its athletic facilities that meets the requirements of Education Article §§ 7-425 and 7-451, Annotated Code of Maryland.
    2. A school’s venue-specific emergency action plan shall be:
      1. Posted at each athletic facility at the school;
      2. Available on the school’s website for viewing by a student athlete’s parent or guardian at the beginning of each school year;
      3. Distributed to each member of the coaching staff; and
      4. Rehearsed in person and interactively by all coaching staff of each sport before each of their respective seasons.
    3. The venue-specific emergency action plan for the operation and use of AEDs shall ensure that at a minimum:
      1. One AED is provided on-site, is available for use, and is located at or within a brief walk from each school-sponsored athletic event;
      2. All members of the coaching staff are trained in the operation and use of an AED;
      3. A trained member of the coaching staff is present at all school-sponsored athletic events;
      4. One AED is freely accessible during all school functions; and
      5. One individual trained in the operation and use of an AED is on the grounds of a middle school or high school during the regular school day.

V. Implementation and Responsibilities

The CEO is authorized to develop an administrative procedure consistent with this policy.

VI. References

  1. Legal
    § 7-425, 7-451, and 13-517, MD. CODE ANN., EDUC.
    COMAR 13A.05.10 (AED Program in Middle Schools and High Schools) COMAR 30.06.01-.02 (Public Access Automated External Defibrillator Program)
  2. Other Policies or Administrative Procedures
    AP 5162 – Emergency Care in Schools
    AP 5168 – Automated External Defibrillator

VII. History

  • Policy Adopted 11/9/06
  • Policy Amended 4/29/10
  • Policy Amended 11/09/23