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Gallatin County 911 Director discusses importance of locally registered AEDs

At the beginning of October 2021, there were 90 registered automated external defibrillators (AED) in Gallatin County. After promotional campaigns by the Gallatin County 911 Department to get more registered in October 2021 and 2022, the number is now 345.

According to Gallatin County 911 Director Tim Martindale, cardiac arrest victims who receive a shock from an AED administered by a bystander before EMS arrival have 2 to 3 times better odds of survival to hospital discharge and more favorable outcomes.

Martindale recently discussed the importance of county residents registering their AEDs.

"Without bystander AED use, 70 percent of cardiac arrest patients either die or survive with impaired brain function. Registering an AED gives Gallatin County 911 access to know where these AEDs are located and can instruct a caller on where to retrieve one. Many facilities have AEDs within their buildings but many visitors to those facilities or those people that are close by, they will never be used in a lifesaving effort. Registering an AED gives us the opportunity to put the AED to use and possibly save a life," he said.

The results from the 2021 campaign were more than impressive, with 240 AEDs registered, and 15 more were registered after a similar campaign last month. Martindale said while the number was less this year, they are still pleased they were able to grow the registration base.

"You never know which AED will be the one that helps save a life. One of those 15 may be the one we need in an emergency,' he said.

Three Forks area residents who want to register their AED can do so at

"AEDs are a vital part of saving a sudden cardiac arrest victim, and we will continue throughout the year to be open for registrations. Although we make a push in October for this to get done, we want AED owners to feel that they can register their AEDs throughout the year. You never know when the one you register will be the one that saves a life," Martindale said.

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