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CPR being introduced to the national curriculum

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Author: Holly Hannigan, Posted: Tuesday, 25th September 2018, 09:00

After an historic announcement in July 2018, the government announced that they will be adding CPR and first aid to the wider curriculum in health education classes. This is such a huge step forward for increasing the survival rates from cardiac arrests.

Cardiac arrest is an electrical malfunction in the heart that causes an irregular heartbeat (arrhythmia) and disrupts the flow of blood to the brain, lungs and other organs, and is a leading cause of death.

When a person has a cardiac arrest, survival depends on immediately getting CPR from someone nearby. About 90 percent of people who suffer out-of-hospital cardiac arrests die. CPR, especially if performed immediately, can double or triple a victim’s chance of survival.

Be the difference for someone you love

If you are called on to give CPR in an emergency, you will most likely be trying to save the life of someone you love – a child, a spouse, a parent or a friend. This is why it is so important that more people know how to perform CPR, so they can increase the chances of saving a life in any given situation. Below are some statistics about this condition:

Over 50% of people who suffer from sudden cardiac arrest have no previous cardiac history.

70% of out-of-hospital cardiac arrests happen in homes.

12 young people lose their lives every week in the UK from sudden cardiac arrest.

Each year, 270 of those young people suffer cardiac arrest whilst they are at school.

Unfortunately, only about 46% of people who experience an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest get the immediate help that they need before professional help arrives.

Hands-Only CPR has been shown to be as effective as conventional CPR for cardiac arrest at home, at work or in public. It can significantly increase a victim’s chance of survival.

Music can save lives

Hands-Only CPR has just two easy steps. If you see a teen or adult suddenly collapse:

1 Call 999 or 112

2 Push hard and fast in the centre of the chest to the beat of the disco song “Stayin’ Alive”

During CPR, you should push on the chest at a rate of 100 to 120 compressions per minute. The beat of “Stayin’ Alive" is a perfect match for this, and research shows that people are more likely to remember the correct pace when trained to the beat of a familiar song. You may recall a TV advert a few years ago that featured Vinnie Jones carrying out CPR to the Bee Gees’ song in a bid to educate viewers.

Automatic External Defibrillators (AEDs)

Many communities are now having an AED installed in an old telephone box or outside their village hall, pub, shop or school. The sooner a patient who is in cardiac arrest can be shocked, the greater the chance of a return to a normal life. Defibrillators are made for everyone to use with easy to follow instructions. You don’t need to be trained to use one – there will be visual or voice prompts to guide you through each step.

For further information about CPR or first aid contact a local training provider or visit: www.bhf.org.uk

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