Greenwood police can now give more help to heart attack victims.

   The department’s nine officers recently completed training on the city’s new automatic external defibrillator said Police Chief Harry Gurin.

   The machine is similar to electric shock units used by ambulances and in hospitals to restore a normal heart beat, except that Greenwood’s unit contains a computer which monitors a patient’s condition. The computer controls the unit so that a non-medical person, with some training, can operate it safely.

   "It will give us a little bit more of an edge," Gurin said.

   The officers completed a four-hour course taught by Jeff Johnson, a paramedic with Johnson County Med-Act.

   The city doesn’t have its own fire or ambulance departments; instead it contracts with Lee’s Summit for those services. The station that typically responds to Greenwood emergencies is located west side of Missouri 291.

   Despite that, Gurin said, the Lee’s Summit Fire Department has good response times in Greenwood.

   Last October, Lee’s Summit paramedics successfully revived a heart attack victim – using their defibrillator -taking over care from Greenwood officers who were giving cardio pulmonary resuscitation.

   Greenwood’s population of about 4,000 is younger than typical for a town its size, Gurin said, because of its fast growth in just- beginning families. So the department doesn’t expect a deluge of heart attack calls. But accidents also can make the machine a life saver.

   "I’m excited about having it," Gurin said, "But I hope we don’t get to put it to a lot of use."

   Greenwood businesses are buying the $3,800 units for the city, Gurinsaid. Mr. Longarm bought one machine. Jones Intercable, Dupuis Redi-Mix Concrete Inc. and Martin Marietta Aggregates have donated money towards a second unit, he said.