You are walking and see a nearby bystander collapse, what do you do? Call 9-1-1, exactly. But, do you know what to do while waiting for emergency medical respondents to arrive?
According to the American Heart Association (AHA), nearly 400,000 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests occur in the United States each year. Unfortunately, the AHA discloses nearly 89 percent of people suffering an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest die due to not receiving immediate on-the-scene CPR. When an individual experiences a sudden cardiac arrest, their well-being and survival is dependent upon receiving immediate on-the-scene CPR.
If you are in a situation where you must perform emergency CPR do you feel you have the knowledge to save someone’s life? Most people do not have the adequate knowledge to perform emergency CPR or are too scared they will hurt the victim. However, the steps to perform emergency CPR are simple and learning them can make a live-saving difference.
When most people think of CPR they envision conventional CPR methods, which involve alternating rescue breaths with chest compressions. However, Hands-Only CPR is simple to learn and has been shown to be as effective as conventional CPR for sudden cardiac arrest. According to the AHA, on-the-scene Hands-Only CPR can double or triple victims’ survival rates.
The Hands-Only CPR method involves no mouth-to-mouth contact with the victim and eliminates the second-guessing of breath-to-compression ratios. Instead, Hands-Only CPR incorporates a continuous flow of hard chest compression. Hand-Only CPR is the simplest, best option to use when an adult or teenager is experiencing a sudden cardiac arrest. However conventional, full CPR is the best option to use in any situation involving an infant or child, drowning victim or instance where an individual is experiencing breathing problems.
Steps to Perform Hands-Only CPR
When an adult or teenager collapses due to sudden cardiac arrest:
- Call 9-1-1
- Position the victim face-up on a hard, flat surface
- Place one hand in the center of the victim’s chest and interlock the other hand on top of the first
- Start Chest Compressions: Press hard and fast in the center of the victim’s chest.
- Continue chest compressions until the victim starts to breath or emergency medical respondents arrive
- Perform chest compression to the beat of the Bee Gee’s hit disco song “Stayin’ Alive” (The song has more than 100 beats per minute which is the adequate rate to perform compressions.)
In and effort to save lives, Indiana University Health shares the AHA and Red Cross’ goal that at least one person in every home is trained to perform CPR. Learn to save a life today, view the AHA’s Two Steps to Staying Alive Hand-Only CPR training video.