Most of America was watching January 2 when Damar Hamlin received CPR on the field when he went into cardiac arrest during the game in Cincinnati. For nine minutes, the Bill’s medical staff performed CPR and used an AED to restart his heart and they were credited with saving his life. Training in CPR /First Aid and AED is essential in any safety program. You never know when you might need it. Having at least one person on every crew trained in CPR/First Aid and AED is a best practice for companies like ours. Research shows that 9 out of 10 people will die outside of a hospital environment unless a bystander performs CPR. Brain damage can start in four minutes and death in ten if CPR is not performed. Average response time for emergency services is ten minutes, that’s why being able to respond with CPR is so important. It’s a matter of life and death.
Many people are hesitant to perform CPR for various reasons. Fear of breaking ribs, mouth to mouth concerns, hesitation about using an AED or fear of legal ramifications are all concerns used as reasons not to become involved. The breaking of ribs is a reality. It might happen. But what is the alternative? Mouth to mouth doesn’t have to be done. Hands-only CPR is also effective. Most domestic applications, where it’s a child or spouse or family member, mouth to mouth hesitation isn’t an issue because it’s family but for those with concerns, hands-on is “doing something” that can help prevent brain damage and death.
AEDs are not complicated. AEDs are designed to be used by anyone with prompts that are an audio descriptive of every phase of effective use. Pictures and lights coach the user, and the AED is designed to detect a heartbeat and will not shock if it detects a heartbeat.
Good Samaritan laws are in place in all 50 states. The good Samaritan law is designed to protect the person or workers who are giving reasonable assistance to someone in peril or injured as long as they are acting in good faith, in line with their training and performing a lifesaving act.
CPR and First Aid training has expiration dates and renewal is essential to maintain the credentials but the training is not complicated and is readily available through many sources including on line, classroom and in house certified trainers. There’s really no reason not to have workers qualified to perform CPR/First Aid and to use an AED. You never know when those skills may be needed.