'Every Second Counts'

HFJ celebrates CPR Awareness Week, offers training

Sunday, June 17, 2018

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THE Heart Foundation of Jamaica (HFJ) says it is celebrating Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) Awareness Week from today to June 23, under the theme 'Every Second Counts!'

The HFJ is expected to kick off the week today with a CPR demonstration at the Everyone's a Winner Father's Day Race at Hope Gardens in St Andrew.

CPR, according to the HFJ, is a life-saving technique which supports and maintains breathing and circulation for a person who has stopped breathing (respiratory arrest) and/or whose heart has stopped due to cardiac arrest.

According to the American Heart Association, almost 90 per cent of people who suffer out-of-hospital cardiac arrests die, the HFJ said in a release announcing CPR Awareness Week.

CPR, especially if performed in the first few minutes of cardiac arrest, can double or triple a person's chance of survival, the HFJ said.

Throughout CPR week, the HFJ said it will also raise awareness and give training on:

• June 18, CPR demonstration at Emancipation Park from 4:00 pm to 6:30 pm;

• June 23, Family and Friends CPR Day Training 9:00 am to 3:00 pm.

Learning CPR is particularly important for the following reasons:

• There is a limited emergency medical response system in Jamaica;

• The geographical location of health institutions acts as a barrier;

• There is currently no legislation to support emergency medical care;

• Four out of five cardiac arrests happen at home;

• Statistically speaking, if called on to administer CPR in an emergency, the life you save is likely to be someone at home: a child, a spouse, a parent, or a friend.

• Failure to act in a cardiac emergency can lead to deaths;

• Effective bystander CPR, provided immediately after sudden cardiac arrest, can double or triple a victim's chance of survival;

• Sadly, most people may feel helpless to act during a cardiac emergency because they do not know how to administer CPR.

“It's far better to do something than to do nothing at all. Join us on our public education campaign during CPR week; get trained and save a life because 'Every Second Counts',” the HFJ said.

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