What items should be stored with an AED (defibrillator)?

An Automated External Defibrillator (AED) is a potentially lifesaving piece of equipment which delivers an electrical shock to victims of a cardiac arrest (where the heart has stopped beating).

However it is important that AEDs are stored with the correct equipment. Here’s our list of suggested items which should be stored with any defibrillator. 

Spare defibrillator pads

Every defibrillator should ideally have at least 2 sets of ‘pads’. Defibrillator pads are placed on the chest of the casualty and deliver the electrical shock.

All defibrillator pads come with an expiry date so it is important to regularly check that the defibrillator pads are still in-date !

A CPR face shield / pocket mask

In most cases CPR will be performed when using a defibrillator. A CPR face shield or pocket mask is an important piece of equipment to protect the first aider from any blood or bodily fluidsAutomated External Defibrillator (AED)

Scissors / shears

Defibrillator pads need to be applied to bare skin and not over clothing. Removing clothing from an unconscious victim (who is a ‘dead weight’) can be a difficult and time consuming task. Special ‘tough cut’ scissors can speed up this process and save valuable time. 

A towel

A defibrillator delivers an electrical shock to the victim. Therefore any water on the chest will cause the shock to become ineffective as electricity will take the path of least resistance (through the water) rather than through the chest.

A towel is useful to dry any excess water.


Many countries / organisations will have specific paperwork which should be completed every time a defibrillator is used on a patient. The paperwork required should be stored with the defibrillator. 

Want to learn more about how to use a defibrillator in an emergency situation? Why not sign up to our FREE online AED course





John Furst

JOHN FURST is an experienced emergency medical technician and qualified first aid and CPR instructor. John is passionate about first aid and believes everyone should have the skills and confidence to take action in an emergency situation.

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2 Responses


    Good to observation and demonstration! I’m highly recommended.

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