Ambulance service accepted into Helping Hearts Program

Ambulance service accepted into Helping Hearts Program The Vermillion/Clay County Ambulance of Vermillion has been accepted into The Prudential Helping Hearts Program.

The local ambulance service is one of 500 volunteer rescue squads from across the country that will be accepted into the program during 1999.

The Prudential Helping Hearts Program is a nationwide grant-making initiative, which has committed over $4 million to nearly 1900 volunteer EMS squads since 1994, for purchasing portable cardiac defibrillators. These machines, which administer jolts of electricity to "reset" the heart's natural rhythm, have been called one of the most important lifesaving inventions of the 20th century.

In 1999, The Prudential Helping Hearts Program is making $1,000 available to help defray the cost of defibrillators.

Kicked off in New Jersey on Feb. 14, 1994, The Prudential Helping Hearts Program has been providing defibrillator grants to volunteer EMS squads for the past five years. At the end of 1996, nearly 1,000 squads in 13 states had qualified for $2.5 million in grants.

In 1997, Prudential expanded its Helping Hearts Program to all 50 states and since then has pledged an additional $1.7 million in grants to help at least almost 900 more EMS squads across the United States purchase cardiac defibrillators.

"The defibrillators that Prudential helps purchase will, in all likelihood make the difference between life and death for hundreds of individuals who suffer cardiac arrest. Few investments have a greater potential to save lives," said Scott Peterson, executive director of Prudential's Helping Hearts Program. "Prudential is proud to help the Vermillion/Clay County Ambulance purchase this invaluable life-saving machine."

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