Efforts underway to designate Anoka County as a Heart Safe Community

Coon Rapids police officer Bryan Platz knows what it takes to keep a heart beating. While on duty, he’s responded to hundreds of “person collapsed, possible cardiac arrest” calls and taken life-saving action.

Coon Rapids police officer Bryan Platz demonstrates to employees of Lake Air Companies how easy it is to follow an AED’s life-saving voice commands.

Coon Rapids police officer Bryan Platz demonstrates to employees of Lake Air Companies how easy it is to follow an AED’s life-saving voice commands.Photo by Sue Austreng

Devoting his life to protect and serve, Platz went the extra mile coordinating efforts to earn the Allina Health Heart Safe Community designation for the city of Coon Rapids.

That designation recognizes efforts to teach citizens how to recognize when someone suffers a sudden cardiac arrest and how to respond. Earning that designation also means placing automated external defibrillators wherever people live, work and play.

Coon Rapids was named a Heart Safe Community in November 2013, making it the first city in Anoka County to receive the designation and the 25th city in the state.

But Platz wasn’t about to stop there.

Now, Platz is leading efforts to establish Anoka County as a Heart Safe Community.

To kick off those efforts, free CPR training sessions were conducted each day of the week during National CPR week, June 1-7.

Platz also coordinated a CPR and AED training effort at Potbelly’s in Riverdale on June 3. During that three-hour event, Heart Safe instructors offered free CPR and AED training and money was raised to go towards the purchase of an AED to be placed at the restaurant.

More recently, Lake Air Companies of Coon Rapids purchased six AED units for their company and had all of their employees undergo CPR and AED training.

“With 100 percent employee training and six AEDs at their location, this is what every company should do. Lake Air is the model company,” Platz said and invited local community groups, organizations, and businesses to contact him for more information about CPR and AED training.

To learn more about Platz’ efforts to establish Anoka County as a Heart Safe Community, to get your business or organization on the training schedule, or to learn about purchasing an AED unit, contact Platz at Heartsafe@coonrapidsmn.gov.

For more information about Allina Health Heart Safe, visit AllinaHealth.org and search for “Heart Safe Community.”

Sue Austreng is at
sue.austreng@ecm-inc.com

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