Taking CPR Training Can Make a Difference

When an adult experiences a sudden cardiac arrest, the chances of survival greatly depend on immediate CPR (cardio pulmonary resuscitation). With the advancement in the medical field and technology you would assume that the chances for survival in the 21st century have improved. However, according to Chronicle Medical Writer, Sabin Russel sudden cardiac arrest claims the lives of 900 Americans every day. With proper training and widespread awareness more people could be equipped and therefore lives could be saved. It is vital that we understand the significance of cardio pulmonary resuscitation.

In many emergency situations CPR would be effective if people felt comfortable. The issue is oftentimes reluctance. Many bystanders are eager to help but applying conventional CPR goes beyond their comfort level. CPR may also seem intimidating because you don’t want to hurt the victim. It is a legitimate reason. Sabin Russel says that, “effective chest compression can break the victim’s ribs about one-third of the time.” That is a serious risk but we have to consider the importance of saving a person’s life. It is a risk worth taking. Without CPR the changes of survival are slim.

A new announcement in emergency care for cardiac arrest may prove to be a much needed shift. According to recent reports the practice of cardio-pulmonary resuscitation (mouth-to-mouth resuscitation) is being replaced by what is called a “hands only” approach. The idea is to perform 30 chest compressions without locking lips with the victim. Based on an article by the USA Today several cities are leading away from the long held practice of mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. It never occurred to me that there was a need for any change. However, strong evidence indicates that more people are willing to help a victim if they only have to perform chest compressions. Dr. Chris Barton supports the new guidelines, “the latest research on CPR supports the notion that in the critical minutes before an ambulance or defibrillation devices arrives, it is very important to provide uninterrupted, deep chest compressions.” The new change would encourage bystander to take an active role. In fact the new guidelines would save tens of thousands of lives every year. Mary Hazinski, a nurse at Vanderbilt University Medical Center and spokeswoman for the American Heart Association says, “If you’re untrained, just remember to push hard and push fast. Doing something is better than doing nothing.”

Proper CPR training can make the difference in a life and death situation. The American Red Cross website provides excellent resources that are available to individual, groups and employers. The Red Cross provides programs in first aid, CPR and AED for any age. In addition the programs can be tailored to the needs of specific groups and individuals. I know from personal experience that CPR training is valuable. When I was working with students in a group home we were always reminded of the safety of the students. It was a constant priority. My CPR training prepared me and gave me the assurance for those unexpected emergencies.

The American Heart Association has gone to great lengths to educate the general public about CPR. Taking CPR training can make a difference. Our immediate response can save a life. The issue should not be a choice of traditional CPR or Hands Only CPR. It is a matter of conscience. Maybe more people would change their minds if they simply put themselves in the shoes of the victim.

Sources:

http://redcross.org/SERVICES/HSS/courses/

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/04/01/BAJ8VTF35.DTL

http://www.usatoday.com/news/health/2004-02-23-cpr-usat_x.htm