This year, the National CPR and AED Awareness week took place the first week of June. In recognition of this important awareness week, Casey & Devoti and the National Safety Council are calling on all citizens to learn or to take a refresher course in CPR.
Why Learn CPR?
- Sudden cardiac arrest can happen to anyone at any time, regardless of age, sex or apparent level of fitness.
- Many sudden cardiac arrest victims appear healthy, with no known heart disease or risk factors associated with heart disease.
- There are almost 383,000 out-of-hospital sudden cardiac arrests annually, 88 percent of which occur at home.
- More than 92 percent of people who suffer cardiac arrest outside the hospital will die from it.
- Currently, less than eight percent of people who have an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest survive.
- Effective bystander CPR provided immediately after sudden cardiac arrest can double or triple a victim’s chances of surviving, yet less than 1/3 of all cardiac arrest victims receive bystander CPR.
- In cities where defibrillation is provided within five to seven minutes after sudden cardiac arrest, the survival rate is as high as 49 percent.
What to Do
If you see an unresponsive adult who is not breathing or not breathing normally, immediately call 911, get (or ask someone to get) an AED and begin to push hard and fast on the center of the chest. If you’ve been trained in CPR, provide two breaths after every 30 compressions and do this until the AED arrives and is ready to use. Remember, your actions can only help.
Becoming CPR & AED Trained
The NSC offers training courses throughout the country. There are two ways to get initial CPR & AED training from the Council: take a classroom-based course or take an online course followed by hands-on skills testing. Refresher training generally is classroom-based, but repeating the online course is also an option. NSC provides every student who completes a classroom-based CPR & AED course or a combined First Aid, CPR & AED course a DVD containing the course content. For a schedule of course offerings in the St. Louis area, contact the Safety Council of Greater St. Louis at (314) 621-9200 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The American Red Cross also offers a training class entitled First-Aid, CPR and AED for Lay Responders. For a schedule of course offerings in the St. Louis area, contact The Greater St. Louis American Red Cross at (314) 516-2800 or go to www.redcross.org/mo/st-louis.