Italian soccer leagues have been at the forefront of promoting automated external defibrillators (AEDs) at sporting events ever since 2012 when Piermario Morosini, a 25-year-old midfielder for Livorno, suffered sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) during a match and died.
An ambulance carrying an AED was at the stadium but was delayed in reaching Morosini because an entrance to the stadium was inadvertently blocked. After public outcry and subsequent legislation, AEDs are now required to be in the stadium or in a stand-by ambulance at all Italy’s professional soccer games.
Cardiac Science Corporation, an Opto Circuits group company and a global leader in automated external defibrillators (AEDs), was recently named a certified supplier of AEDs for Lega Nazionale Dilettante (LND), Italy’s amateur soccer league. The LND represents more than 1.2 million players.
Cardiac Science, manufacturer of Powerheart® AEDs, was one of two suppliers selected by the league. LND President Carlo Tavecchioannounced the choice in a letter to league members, citing Cardiac Science’s “long experience in the defibrillation industry, the bibliography of recognized market research leaders, the experiences with foreigner sport clubs, the sales quality organization in the territory and the product reliability assured by the quantity of units installed.”
Under the agreement with LND, Cardiac Science’s Italian partner, Bioforma, will provide a range of products and services for implementation of the AED program, including Powerheart® G5 AEDs (a model not available in the U.S. market), management services, signage, and communications consulting.
“Defibrillation within three minutes of SCA can raise chances of survival by 70 percent, but ambulances rarely respond that quickly,” said Al Ford, Cardiac Science General Manager and Senior Vice President of Sales / Marketing. “That’s why sports teams need an AED on site and ready for use. Cardiac Science is proud to offer an exceptionally reliable, easy-to-use life-saving device to help protect the lives of Italy’s soccer players.”
The LND is Italy’s governing body for amateur soccer, comprising both adult leagues (for men and women) and youth leagues. It represents more than 14,500 clubs, 65,000 teams, and 1.2 million players.