Yesterday I got re-certified for pediatric advanced life support, commonly known as PALS. Although this class is designed for healthcare providers, “strong basic life support (BLS) skills are the foundation of advanced life support” and I think everybody including non-healthcare providers should take the time to learn some simple life saving skills (American Heart Association, 2011, p. 3).
Thefirst thing everybody should do is sign up for a BLS course. Check out the American Heart Association website for non-healthcare provider courses (Friends & Family CPR, 2013).
In the mean time….until you get proper BLS training (disclaimer: this blog post is NOT a BLS class or formal training in anyway) you should educate yourself about Hands Only CPR (cardiopulomary resuscitation).
“Most people who experience cardiac arrest at home, work or in a public location die because they don’t receive immediate CPR from someone on the scene. As a bystander, don’t be afraid. Your actions can only help” (Hands Only CPR, 2013, p.1).
HOW TO GIVE HANDS-ONLY CPR (directly from the American Heart Association Website)
“If you see a teen or adult suddenly collapse, (FIRST) call 9-1-1 and then push hard and fast in the center of the chest to the beat of the classic disco song “Stayin’ Alive” (deliver chest compressions approximately 2 inches in depth to chest at a rate of 100 beats/minutes ). CPR can more than double a person’s chances of survival, and “Stayin’ Alive” has the right beat for Hands-Only CPR” (Hands Only CPR, 2013, p.1).
Check out this video from the American Heart Association for a demonstration of Hands Only CPR for non-healthcare providers (2013).
I hope you are fortunate enough to where you won’t ever need to use these skills, but you never know when an emergency might occur and you could be somebody’s only option… In the event you ever see me collapse and go unresponsive in public, please feel free to practice on me & call 911 !!! =)
American Heart Association. (2011). Pediatric Advanced Life Support Provider Manual. Printed in the United States of America.
Family & Friends CPR. (2013). Retrieved from the American Heart Association website: http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/CPRAndECC/CommunityCPRandFirstAid/CommunityProducts/Family-Friendsreg-CPR_UCM_303576_Article.jsp
Hands Only CPR (2013). Retrieved from the American Heart Association website: http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/CPRAndECC/HandsOnlyCPR/Hands-Only-CPR_UCM_440559_SubHomePage.jsp