R.V. Doon

Stayin’ Alive

Have you seen the TV advertisement for Hands only CPR? It features a guy walking around on his hands, even playing basketball on his hands. It’s been two years seen the Heart Association has debuted hands only CPR but its been slow to catch on. In my past, I’ve been a CPR instructor with advanced cardiac life support training. The old way of CPR featured a routine of tilting the chin back, listening for breaths, doing finger sweeps in case the airway was blocked, and then the rescuer had to breathe for the patient before beginning chest pushes. More people failed CPR courses or had trouble in them because of the perfect breathing required. Well, that’s all gone now. Recent research has proved that cardiac patients do as good or better when they get hands only CPR. Why?

You see someone drop, they aren’t breathing, and you call 9-1-1. Most rescuers thought that was enough because they weren’t trained in CPR. Now, you can call 9-1-1 and go straight to chest compressions until paramedics arrive. Don’t be shy. Save someone’s life.

Run your finger from the hollow of a person’s throat down the center of his chest until you feel the last tip of a bone. Put the heel of your hand about one inch behind the tip, so you won’t break it. Put your other hand on top and lock your fingers. You should be on your knees and leaning over the person’s chest with your arms straight. Your goal is to mimic the work of the heart by forcing blood into the brain and other vital organs. Your aim is to do chest pushes at a rate of 100 times a minute. To make it easier for you, perform the chest pushes to the beat of that old BeeGee’s hit, Stayin’ Alive. Before you know it paramedics will arrive.

In Body Wave, Reece Carson the protagonist, performs CPR in Chapter Two. I wish now I had written her doing it to the beat of Stayin’ Alive. What an easy way to remember how to get in the required number of chest pushes. Readers– Hands only CPR gives you the chance to give someone their life back. Be there.

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