The FDA defines Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) as, “portable, life-saving devices designed to treat people experiencing Sudden Cardiac Arrest, a medical condition in which the heart stops beating suddenly and unexpectedly.” As a Class III medical device, AEDs and their accessories are regulated by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA). Given their critical role in emergency situations, it is imperative to regulate AEDs to ensure their safety and effectiveness.

Ensuring Safety:

One of the primary objectives of FDA regulation is to ensure the safety of medical devices, including AEDs. The FDA reviews and approves AEDs before they enter the market, to be sure that these devices meet specific safety standards. Rigorous testing and evaluation processes are employed to identify any potential hazards, assess device performance, and mitigate risks associated with the use of AEDs. This systematic approach helps protect users from potential harm caused by faulty or ineffective devices. 

Evaluating Device Effectiveness:

The FDA also assesses the effectiveness of AEDs. This evaluation involves analyzing clinical data, conducting trials, and reviewing scientific evidence to determine whether a particular AED performs as intended. By regulating AEDs, the FDA strives to promote devices that have been proven effective in treating SCA and improving patient outcomes. This ensures that medical professionals and bystanders can have confidence in the reliability of the AEDs they use. 

Promoting Standardization:

The FDA’s oversight of AEDs promotes standardization in terms of device performance, labeling, and usage guidelines. By establishing uniform requirements for manufacturers, the FDA ensures that AEDs adhere to certain quality standards, making it easier for users to understand and operate these devices effectively. This standardization simplifies training efforts and increases the likelihood of successful outcomes during life-threatening situations. Thanks to this standardization, we can safely say, “the best AED is the closest AED.”

Addressing Post-Market Safety Concerns:

The agency also continues to monitor the performance and safety of AEDs after they are on the market. Post-market surveillance enables the FDA to identify and respond to any safety concerns or adverse events associated with specific AED models. By promptly addressing such issues, the FDA can protect users and be sure that AEDs continue to meet the required safety and performance standards. Working with a company like RescueStat keeps your organization protected because we will alert you of any FDA recalls of your products and we only sell FDA-approved AEDs and accessories.

Facilitating Innovation:

While regulations are essential for patient safety, the FDA also recognizes the need to foster innovation in the medical device industry. The FDA’s oversight of AEDs strikes a balance between regulation and facilitating innovation. By streamlining the approval process and providing clear guidelines, the FDA encourages manufacturers to develop and improve AED technologies. This approach promotes the development of advanced features and functionalities that enhance the effectiveness and usability of AEDs, ultimately benefiting patients and organizations.


FDA regulation empowers AED ownership. At RescueStat, we sell only FDA-approved AEDs and accessories, protecting your organization from risk. To learn more about how to protect your organization, fill out the form below.