Could the Pope Give You a Heart Attack?

By Maria Fontanazza
1 Comment

One town in Pennsylvania is preparing for the Papal visit by equipping its various sites with defibrillators.

Those who have been in the presence of the pope often describe the experience as deeply emotional and quite overwhelming. But could these feelings actually cause a heart attack? Probably not—although official studies have not been conducted.

As the devoted prepare for the pilgrimage to Philadelphia next month, the town of Tinicum, PA is preparing for the Papal visit of Pope Francis by outfitting several locations around its town with defibrillators.

Tinicum Township, PA Representatives with Kevin Kerns (center), CEO of Tri-State Training and Safety Consulting, LLC, HeartSine’s Authorized Distributor. Image courtesy of HeartSine.
Tinicum Township, PA representatives with Kevin Kerns (center), CEO of Tri-State Training and Safety Consulting, HeartSine’s Authorized Distributor. Image courtesy of HeartSine. (Click to enlarge)

The device of choice is the (appropriately named) Samaritan Public Access Defibrillator, which is manufactured by HeartSine Technologies. The product is intended for use during sudden cardiac arrest, as it provides an electrical shock that restores the heart back to normal rhythm. The American Heart Association recommends using both CPR and defibrillation within three to five minutes of the cardiac event.

“With 84% of Sudden Cardiac Arrest incidents taking place outside of the hospital, it is crucial to place AEDs in all public places,” said Pamela Alpin, Sales Manager at HeartSine Technologies, in a news release. While it is important that these potentially life-saving devices are available in public places, proper training is recommended as well. According to Tinicum’s township manager, David Schreiber, the town selected the Samaritan device because it walks the user through the process of employing the AED.

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About The Author

Maria Fontanazza, MedTech Intelligence


  1. Dr. D

    Maria, Great Article! I hope the Papal visit does not result in an increase in myocardial infarctions. My concern would be the Pope having one after hearing a confession from old Dr. D.

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