Community AED Program


Community Public Access Defibrillator Program


In 2014 the County of Renfrew Paramedic Service took over the Public Access Defibrillator (PAD) Program for the County of Renfrew.

The PAD Program is responsible for distributing and maintaining the Automated External Defibrillators (AED) purchased through Government funding and located throughout the County of Renfrew.

The County of Renfrew currently has 286 active
Public Access Defibrillators.

How Does An AED Work?

A defibrillator has 2 purposes.

When the defibrillator is turned on and the defibrillator pads are applied to an unconscious person’s chest, the defibrillator will interpret the person’s heart rhythm.

If the person’s heart rhythm is in a rhythm called ventricular fibrillation (VF), the defibrillator will inform the rescuer with a verbal prompt to push the shock button.

The defibrillator will deliver a 150 Joules of electrical shock through the defibrillator pads to the person’s heart. 

Why use an AED?

The Heart & Stroke Foundation state that CPR has no effect on a person when their heart rhythm is in (VF).

The Heart & Stroke Foundation also state that up to 60% of adults that go into cardiac arrest will go into (VF)

The only way that a rescuer can get the person’s heart rhythm out of (VF) and get the heart beating regularly is to deliver an electric shock with the defibrillator.

The Heart & Stroke Foundation is saying that once the rescuer applies a defibrillator to a person and delivers a shock from the defibrillator, that the person has up to a 60% chance of survival.

Maintaining Equipment

The County of Renfrew PAD Coordinator maintains a database of all defibrillators and their pad and battery expiry dates.

The PAD Coordinator will notify the location when their pads and/or batteries require replacement. The PAD Coordinator will order the equipment through the County’s two suppliers.

The supplies are delivered to the PAD Coordinator where the database is updated, and then they’re delivered and installed into the defibrillator.

Annual equipment inspections are completed at all locations.



For inquiries or supplies please contact:

Robert Blackwell
County of Renfrew PAD Coordinator/Trainer
Department of Emergency Services

613-735-3675 ext 500
Fax 613-735-7815

Media Gallery


New defibrillator at GM library

Sudden cardiac arrest can happen to anybody, even those with no prior symptoms. An on-site Automated External Defibrillator (AED) can mean a difference in saving a person’s life on the spot, or while waiting for an ambulance. 

Greater Madawaska Public Library is among the latest local organizations to receive an AED and officials gathered there recently to celebrate the life-saving addition to the facility. Organizations and agencies had the opportunity to apply for defibrillators through the Heart and Stroke Foundation, explained Robert Blackwell, Renfrew County public access defibrillator program co-ordinator.

“We put in an application for the library and it was denied,” explained “But in the meantime the Heart and Stroke Foundation had a donation come through.”

Lucas Smith of Cardiac Science, the company that donated the device, was on hand for the presentation. He ran a demonstration for officials in attendance, explaining that even individuals with no first aid training are able to use the device when needed.

Voice prompts as well as a text display will walk users through each step, he said.

“It’s fully automatic,” he said, making note of a common fear – actually delivering the shock.

“There’s that last minute doubt or fear. What most people don’t know is you cannot hurt someone with a defibrillator – it will only shock you if you have a shockable rhythm,” he said.

All devices on the market are designed that way, he stressed.

“If you don’t know, if that person is unresponsive, they’re unconscious, you don’t feel a pulse, go and get the device, put in on them. It’ll tell you – ‘no shock advised’ if that’s the case and then it’ll coach you through CPR,” he said. “It really is unbelievable therapy the device is able to give.”

A cabinet to house the AED was donated by the County of Renfrew defibrillator program, explained Blackwell. The county program will also look after a database, maintenance, training and help facilities keep their devices up to date

All Renfrew County schools and hockey arenas are outfitted with AEDs, said Blackwell.

There are a number of defibrillators in Calabogie at the community centre and St. Joseph’s Catholic School, Calabogie Peaks and at the golf course. There are also devices In Griffith at the community centre and the Lions Club hall and at the Matawatchan community centre. Both Greater Madawaska fire halls also have them.

Robert Blackwell, acting commander of the County of Renfrew Paramedic Service, explains how a automated external defibrillator works to members of the Renfrew County health committee during a recent meeting. He also ran the county council members through CPR training.


Cheryl Gallant Delivers Defibrillators to Kinsmen Pool in Pembroke

Pembroke, Ontario – Cheryl Gallant, M.P. for Renfrew—Nipissing—Pembroke, was pleased visit the Kinsmen Pool to see the recently installed Automated External Defibrillator (AED). The Defibrillator was funded through a partnership between our Conservative Federal Government and the Heart and Stroke Foundation.

“I am happy to hear that the staff has already been trained to use the new defibrillator,” said MP Gallant. “These defibrillators will be important to protecting the health and lives of those affected by severe cardiac episodes while in the sports facility. The Heart and Stroke Foundation’s partnership in this program to promote healthy and safe lifestyles for Canadians is greatly appreciated.”

The AED received by the Kinsmen Pool was a Tier 2B defibrillator, which means that there is already an existing AED in the building, but there is a need for an additional unit to ensure no one is more than 25 meters away from one in case of an emergency.

The Federal Government has committed $10 million in funding for a four year period to, in partnership with the Heart and Stroke Foundation, install Automated External Defibrillators in recreational arenas across Canada, and train staff and personnel on how to use them. For more information on this program please, visit