February 04, 2014
Bronson Heart & Vascular is offering a free Hands-Only CPR and AED class for the general public to learn how to recognize when someone is experiencing cardiac arrest, and then help by using an automatic electronic defibrillator (AED) and Hands-Only CPR.
Nearly 1,000 Americans die of sudden cardiac arrest every day, but some of these deaths could likely be prevented if people had more knowledge, and felt less intimidation about intervening using modern life-saving technology and techniques.
Sized just a little larger than a laptop, AEDs are smaller versions of the devices hospitals use to shock a stopped heart back into beating. An estimated 1 million AEDs are found throughout the U.S. in schools, shopping areas, sports arenas, movie theaters and other publicly-accessible locations. When promptly and properly used, they are near-miraculous in their ability to pull heart attack victims back from danger. They are almost fully-automated and simple to use. Users just flip a power switch, place a pair of paddles onto a victim’s bare chest and press one or two buttons to complete the process.
Class attendees will learn how to identify, locate and use an AED and will be able to practice operating an actual device.
Attendees will also learn the Hands-Only CPR technique, which allows an intervener to perform life-saving compressions without needing to make direct contact with his or her mouth. Class instructors hope that employing this method will give confidence to those who want to help, but are uncomfortable performing mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.
“Even if someone has been trained in the mouth-to-mouth CPR technique, they may not recall the ratio of breaths to compressions or they may not want to expose themselves to unknown health hazards by putting their mouth on a stranger’s,” said cardiovascular program coordinator, Carmela Pulling. “The current research indicates that hands-only CPR is effective and more likely to be used more often by the general public”
Class attendees will use mannequins to practice hand placement, depth and compressions required to perform Hands-Only CPR.
The Automated External Defibrillator (AED) and Hands-only CPR class will be held Wednesday, February 12, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Gilmore Center for Health Education, located at 7 Healthcare Plaza on Bronson Methodist Hospital’s North Campus. Register at bronsonhealth.com or call to (269) 341-6550.