Looking at the legal issues
The use of automated external defibrillators (AED) in a health club can save lives, but their existence and use also carries some heavy responsibilities. If your club maintains an AED either voluntarily or per state law requirements, you and your staff have specific mandatory legal responsibilities toward potential victims of on-site cardiac failure. Failure to comply can result in liability.
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Source: Infographic: AEDs
Mandated Legal Responsibilities
While many businesses are mandated by law to include AEDs in their emergency plan, only California, the District of Columbia, Illinois, Indiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island have laws requiring them in health clubs.
However, the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) and the American Heart Association (AHA) highly encourage health clubs to maintain an AED and train their staff on their proper use.
If your facility meets any of the following criteria, both the ACSM and the AHA recommend AED placement and training:
More than 2,500 members
- Classes or programs for high-risk populations
- Access to emergency personnel or facility typically takes longer than 5 minutes
Managing the Risks
Facilities with defibrillators are required to provide staff training and certification in correct use and to keep them properly maintained, which includes regular inspection and testing. Training usually includes completion of a CPR course that meets American Red Cross or AHA standards. Any emergency plan that includes the use of AEDs requires review by a licensed medical doctor.
Negligence lawsuits can result from errors, but noncompliance with any state or federal regulations can also expose your health club to liability.
Good Samaritan laws provide some immunity from liability for emergency health service providers, but reckless or gross negligence isn’t included.
Protecting your fitness center from liability claims
Did you know that liability protection is critical for health clubs and fitness centers? It only takes one injury-related lawsuit to financially ruin your organization. Having the right insurance protection offers you peace of mind.
Finding the right insurance coverage doesn’t have to be difficult or confusing. The SADLER insurance experts understand your needs and the unique risks associated with your fitness facility.
If you would like to learn more about liability prevention or want to get a customized insurance quote, apply online now or telephone us 800-622-7370. It’s obligation free and most quotes can be sent in a few hours. There’s no application fee and we offer the most competitive rates in the industry, so what do have to lose?