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31 May 2016

Review of ‘Saver One AED Training Unit’

Review of ‘Saver One AED Training Unit’

Overview

When asked by Steve Bray and his team at SP Services to review a generic AED training unit for £30, my initial reaction (after over 20 years of teaching resuscitation) was ‘no one can make a half decent practical AED training unit for that amount of money’.  However, we took a sample unit and it has been put through its paces by over 20 Resuscitation Officers in our team over the last month.  The end result is I have been proved wrong and this little yellow box of tricks has surprised all of us in what you can get for £30.  Don’t get me wrong – it does have some flaws (as noted below), but then for £30 I’m not expecting perfection when the next nearest generic unit on the market is £200.  This AED training unit will not suit everyone nor be suitable for every AED training course… but it has a unique opportunity to really educate the masses in the simplicity of using an AED and get some hands on practice. 

Build Quality

This tiny little yellow AED is small enough to fit inside most pockets and light enough that you could carry (literally) hundreds of them!   On initial handling the unit does feel a little plastic, however, we have used it daily now for a month and it has stood up to the tests of being thrown in and out of bags and vehicles and it’s still working fine.  It runs on two AAA batteries, which again have lasted over a month.  The leads and connectors are made of a robust plastic and has shown no signs of wear and tear.  The pads are of a good quality and have lasted about 25 uses per pair (and leave no residue on manikins – one of the things most trainers detest).

Use

The unit follows the latest guidelines from the RCUK and ERC and is based on a simple two button design AED (on/off and shock buttons) with pads that are not pre-connected.  One flaw is the buttons as they do not follow the universal colours used on all live AED’s.  The on button is white where it should be green and the ‘shock’ button lights up as green where it should be red.   

The voice prompts are of reasonable volume, with the only downside being that the voice sounds a little ‘tinny’ - probably due to the speaker size in the unit.  The voice prompts themselves are simple, but not dissimilar to the voice prompts used by the industry leading AED’s.  One positive element I was not expecting from this AED was a continuous metronome during phases of prompted CPR – an excellent addition that should be a standard feature on all AEDs (if not upscaling to feedback CPR prompts)

Sadly, there does not appear to be any way of changing the scenarios and the unit is fixed in a ‘Shock, No Shock’ looping cycle (SNSNSN…) so a direct ‘no shock advised’ scenario does not appear to be possible.

Generic AED Trainer vs Model Specific Trainer

Of course, for full competency based AED courses we always recommend that there should be at least one AED training unit per pair of attendees on the course and that the training units used should be identical to the one placed within the course attendees area.  In reality we know many training providers cannot meet this high standard primarily because they cannot afford to purchase 3-4 of every manufacturers make and model of training unit.   However, this cheap and effective unit could easily be used as an introduction on AED courses ensuring attendees are familiar with the process to be generally followed in using an AED before instructors familiarise the course attendees with their own specific AED.

Summary

In summary, whilst this unit has some minor flaws, they are perfectly acceptable for a great little generic training unit that only costs £30.  If you want to get around these flaws – then spend £200 on the next level of generic trainer available, or buy lots of model specific units for £300 plus!     

For £30 this is an excellent AED training unit that would complement basic first aid training courses and community CPR training, allowing training organisations to have one AED training unit alongside each training manikin.  This cost effective combination can allow for course attendees to work in small groups and get more ‘hands on practice’ - a crucial element of any training. 

It would also be perfectly placed for non-instructor led revision training inside any organisation. Combined with a simple CPR training manikin and a self teach video, this cost effective package can allow staff to practice lifesaving skills on a very regular basis between instructor led courses.

If you would like to discuss how the SP team we can help with your AED Defib requirements, then we'd love to hear from you. Just drop us an email at sales@spservices.co.uk

Click here to learn more about the Saver One Mini AED Trainer

 

About the Author: Steve Furnell -
Owner, Resuscitation and Medical Consultancy Limited

Steve is known for his passion, enthusiasm, knowledge and honesty as he strives to achieve his goal of ensuring patients getting the best care possible. A qualified nurse by background his career has primarily been in acute cardiac nursing, pre hospital care, resuscitation, project management and clinical education.

Much of Steve’s Resuscitation Officer career was taken up as the first Lead Resuscitation Officer for the worlds largest Ambulance Service where he was part of the project team that established the cardiac care programme now used as a model throughout the rest of the UK and in other parts of the World.

He remains current in his clinical practice by working part time for the NHS as a Senior Resuscitation Officer, spending much of this time challenging how patient care can be improved in medical emergencies through the use of preventative measures and high quality education. Steve is also a visiting lecturer for the University of Hertfordshire where he lectures on how high fidelity simulation can be used to reduce human error and medical emergencies.

Website: www.ramcltd.com
Email: info@ramcltd.com
Tel: 0333 577 9100

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