Release Date: Jul 01, 2020

SHELTON, WA – When a person goes into cardiac arrest, every moment counts.

Under cardiac arrest, a person becomes unconscious and stops breathing. At this time, chest compressions, also known as cardiac pulmonary resuscitation or CPR, become a critical, life-saving tool that first responders, health care providers and every day citizens can implement. Mason Health’s Emergency Department prioritized in May the purchase of a ZOLL AutoPulse Resuscitation System that will greatly improve survival rates after cardiac arrest. The device, which is the only one of its kind, automatically sizes to the patient, and has shown improved outcomes in numerous clinical trials, according to the manufacturer, ZOLL.

The machine provides high-quality automated CPR to victims of sudden cardiac arrest. Easy to use and battery-operated, AutoPulse squeezes the patient’s entire chest to improve blood flow to the heart and brain. “The survival rate for patients to remain neurologically intact after cardiac arrest in Mason County is 28 percent, and we are working to get that number up,” said Dr. Joseph Hoffman, Chief of Emergency Services at Mason General Hospital. “Across the country, the rate is 11 percent and in Kitsap County, the rate is 40 percent. We are a lot more rural and have to contend with long distances.”

In multiple comparative studies, the AutoPulse has increased the rate of return of spontaneous circulation (ROSC) for patients, with studies reporting improvements of up to 71 percent. The Rialto Fire Department in California reported a 17 percent increase in ROSC, up to 40 percent, after purchasing the AutoPulse in 2009. Countless other lives have been saved from South Lake Tahoe, California, to Richmond, Virginia.

Not only did Mason Health purchase an AutoPulse, but so did local fire districts, like Central Mason Fire & EMS in Shelton, so that county first responders and health care providers can work together to save lives, said Kristyn Criss, RN Manager.

“Because we are in a rural area, being able to give quality compressions over a long period of time is difficult,” Criss said. “Anything we can do to help save lives is beneficial.”

Mason Health, Public Hospital District No. 1 of Mason County, is certified by Det Norske Veritas (DNV) and is a licensed and accredited acute care hospital with a level four emergency trauma designation. There are more than 100 physicians on staff in 19 specialties. Mason Health now offers 3D Mammography Services. For more information on 3D mammograms or to find a health care provider, visit



From left, Dr. Joseph Hoffman, MD, Unit Secretary Donna Berg, Patricia Renee Byrd, RN, RN Team Manager Kristyn Criss and Director of Emergency Department and Trauma Services Sabrina Nelson pose in the Emergency Department with a ZOLL AutoPulse Resuscitation System. Photo by Arla Shephard Bull, Marketing Coordinator.