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Life-saving AED should be compulsory at major events

A legislator has proposed a standby defibrillator at major events following the death of a competing athlete during the Kadayawan triathlon last Aug. 4.

Councilor Mary Joselle Villafuerte, chair of the committee on health, said the automated external defibrillator (AED) can diagnose life-threatening heart conditions and an impending cardiac arrest.

She said the city government should invest in the AED and install in all 911 ambulances, health centers, and even public places like shopping malls, and parks. A gadget should also be on standby on major sports events.

Last Aug. 4, Mario Francisco Marfori II died after his first run during the Kadayawan triathlo event held in Villa Josefina Resort Village in Toril.

“Accordingly, after the first run, Marfori fell and lost consciousness and even though CPR was immediately given, he still died on the way to the hospital,” said Villafuerte in the sidelines of the regular session.

Villafuerte also said that according to Stax Savellano, race director, three physicians were present when he collapsed.

She also cited Dr. Jack Estuart, one of the physicians present during the incident, “that the absence of a defibrillator contributed to Marfori’s death.”

“I did my research and I found out that an AED only costs P100,000. So I will have this proposal to have an AED in all the ambulances, government or privately owned, including those not run by the city but by the barangays. All athletic events responders should have also on hand an AED,” she said.

“We are convinced by the specialists that AEDs could save lives,” Villafuerte added.

She also suggested for that major sports events should have an emergency action plan, “which can prevent such as tragedy as what occurred recently.”

Part of the said action plan requires the presence of Central 911 or trained emergency responders accredited by Central 911 in the event.

Also, Villafuerte recommended that organizers should be more strict in requiring proof of physical fitness from an accredited physician before athletes can qualify for an event.

“We must adapt all measures to prevent a tragedy like what occurred in the Kadayawan triathlon from occurring again,” Villafuerte said.

The proposal was passed on first reading in last Tuesday’s regular session.

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