Why Everyone Should Know CPR

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What is hands-only CPR?

CPR consists of chest compressions, allowing oxygenated blood to circulate to vital organs such as the brain and heart. CPR can keep a person alive until more advanced procedures such as defibrillation, an electric shock to the chest, can treat cardiac arrest. CPR started by a bystander doubles the likelihood of surviving cardiac arrest.

Why is it critical to know how to administer CPR?

According to the American Heart Association, about 75-80 percent of all out-of-hospital cardiac arrests happen at home, so being trained to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) can mean the difference between life and death for a loved one. Sudden cardiac arrest suffered in a setting outside the hospital is responsible for 250,000 deaths each year. A cardiac arrest victim is likely to die within minutes, and about 95 percent of victims do die before reaching the hospital.

Cardiovascular disease, principally heart disease and stroke, is the nation’s leading killer for both men and women. Heart disease doesn’t kill just the elderly. It is the leading cause of death for all Americans over the age of 35.

How many people actually know CPR?

Only one person in 20 knows CPR, a skill that can “buy time” for a sudden cardiac arrest victim until emergency help arrives.

What is an automated external defibrillator?

An AED is a computerized medical device that can be used to treat a victim of cardiac arrest. It evaluates a sudden cardiac arrest victim’s heart rhythm, determines if shock is needed and delivers an electric shock through the chest wall to the heart. Audio and/or visual prompts guide the user through the process, enabling the device to be used by non-medical personnel. 

Why is access to a defibrillator so important to the chain of survival?

The American Heart Association explains that the chain of survival includes: early contact with a 911 operator, administration of CPR, defibrillation and advanced care. If an AED is nearby, defibrillation can begin at the scene of the emergency.

Where can I learn CPR?

Find a CPR class near you.

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CIS Staff

Written by CIS Staff