It’s National CPR/AED Awareness Week



Do you know how to perform a cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and use an an automated external defibrillator (AED)? Do you know how to act in an emergency to help save a life? As part of the National CPR/AED Awareness Week, the American Heart Association (AHA) conducted a survey about the ability of Americans to act appropriately in a cardiac emergency. And the results are a bit disappointing.

The AHA survey was done online and 1,132 responded to the survey, 162 of whom were African Americans and 150 were Hispanics. 89% or the respondents were willing to help in an emergency situation. The rest are not willing or hesitant to help out because of lack of confidence in their life-saving skills, concerns about possible litigation, or fear of doing more harm than good.

Only 21% of those asked were confident they can do a CPR when necessary and only 15% felt confident they can operate an AED.

According to the AHA Fact Sheet:

Clearly there is a need for the general public who are untrained in medical interventions, to learn the basics of giving help during a cardiac emergency.

I have gone through a couple of CPR training programs. Once was at university as part of my training for International Red Cross youth volunteers. Another time was during a one-day emergency training in Germany which was a requirement for getting a German driver’s license. So far, I am lucky that I haven’t been confronted with a situation wherein I have to prove my life-saving skills. But you will never know when those skills will come in handy.

AHA trains more than 10 million people in CPR annually. Those who undergo training are not only health professionals but ordinary people like you and me. AHA tries to make the training simple and easy to remember. As an example:

“The most effective rate for chest compressions is 100 compressions per minute – the same rhythm as the beat of the BeeGee’s song, “Stayin’ Alive.”

In a previous post, we tackled the topic of AEDs. According to AHA

New technology has made AEDs simple and user-friendly. Clear audio and visual cues tell users what to do when using an AED and coach people through CPR. A shock is delivered only if the victim needs it.”

Interested in learning more about CPR and AEDs? Visit the American Heart Association site, or the AHA hands-only CPR site. Your doctor or your local health group can also point you to the right direction.

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Comments

  1. Very inspiring! Thanks for dropping by.

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NOTE: The contents in this blog are for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as medical advice, diagnosis, treatment or a substitute for professional care. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health professional before making changes to any existing treatment or program. Some of the information presented in this blog may already be out of date.
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