This blog will focus on the importance of CPR and Defibrillators. Before I dive into this I would like to ask if you know the difference between a Heart Attack and a Cardiac Arrest?
‘5 differences between a heart attack and a cardiac arrest:
1. A heart attack is not the same as a cardiac arrest.
2. A heart attack is when one of the coronary arteries becomes blocked. The heart muscle is robbed of its vital blood supply and, if left untreated, will begin to die because it is not getting enough oxygen.
3. A cardiac arrest is when a person’s heart stops pumping blood around their body and they stop breathing normally.
4. Many cardiac arrests in adults happen because of a heart attack. This is because a person who is having a heart attack may develop a dangerous heart rhythm, which can cause a cardiac arrest.
5. A heart attack and a cardiac arrest are both emergency situations. Call 999 straight away.’
The above information is taken from The British Heart Foundations Website.
I remember in secondary school in a PE lesson we learnt CPR. It was a very strange lesson. Knowing that what you were learning could be used to safe a persons life was very strange. I do not remember getting a certificate for it. But I do remember being taught the basics and what to do in the event someone collapses.
Learning CPR is a vital skill you could save life. Here are some facts from the BHF (Click on BHF Statistics Factsheets-UK):
• There are more than 30,000 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests (OHCAs) in the UK each year.
• The overall survival rate in the UK is just 1 in 10.
• Every minute without cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and defibrillation reduces the chance of survival by up to 10 per cent.
• Performing CPR can more than double the chances of survival in some cases (ventricular fibrillation).
• It’s estimated that public-access defibrillators (PADs) are used in less than five per cent of OHCAs.
• The Chain of Survival (below) is a sequence of steps that together maximise the chance of survival following cardiac arrest
These numbers are very scary. I hope that one day we can live in a world without Heart Disease and all the other areas the BHF is working so hard to fight against.
If you want to do your bit to help ensure more people survive out of hospital Cardiac Arrests please learn CPR. You can find out how to do CPR here.
St Johns Ambulance has a course which is Certified for learning CPR. Click here.
When you are out and about keep a look out for any Defibrillators you might see. Take a picture of it and post it on social media. In doing so you are helping to raise awareness of their locations and ensuring other people know where they are. Also check out the National Database for your nearest Defibrillator. (Caution that this may not contain all defibrillators and it may not be accurate as to whether they are in service.)
Always dial 999 if you suspect someone needs an ambulance.
When it comes to CPR it is better for you to try and do something, call for an ambulance immediately. If you can do CPR, try. No one is going to say anything if you do it wrong. Very second that passes counts.
While you are doing CPR you are doing the work of someones heart for them. You are working to keep that person alive. That to me is pretty mind blowing.
Please consider all I have said. If you can also help by donating even £3 to my fundraising to The BHF and The Children’s Heart Surgery Fund, you will be helping to make a difference. Donate here.
Thank you for reading.