Break the Ice: Ways to Transform Workplace Acquaintances into a Team on onebeatcpr.com

Break the Ice: Ways to Transform Workplace Acquaintances into a Team

From CPR training to cooking competitions, there’s something to fit every company

A company is only as strong as its team. And a team is only as strong as the bonds between its members. As eye-rolling as some corporate bonding exercises can be, there are fun and inspiring alternatives, including CPR training. Read on for a sampling of our favorites.

Make the office fun again

You need not fly your team to Maui or buy out Fenway Park to give them valuable team-building opportunities. Introduce one or more of these office-based ideas to give their day-to-day a needed shot in the arm.

  1. Show off their culinary chops. Cooking competitions have become a staple of TV and are relatively easy to transform into activities that require strong leadership and quickly-learned cooperation. Pick a category (brunch! Greek! tropical!) or an ingredient (chickpeas! Twinkies! kale!) and let the creative juices flow.Ultimately, it’s up to the team whether the adventure ends up fantastically delicious or a flambéed disaster. And while not everyone on your staff likes to cook, it’s safe to say most of them like to eat. So set up a judging panel for those team members who aren’t Emeril or Giada.
  2. Work games into the daily calendar. Not everyone has the time (or desire) to get up from their desks and join that cutthroat game of Jenga or seven-card stud by the reception desk. But give employees the option to sign up for a slot as part of their regular work week and space may magically start to appear in those office calendars. Any concerns about lost productivity can be assuaged by increased rapport among your team plus some much-needed time to rest some brain muscles (and stretch others).
  3. Get personal. Simple bonding games such as Two Truths and a Lie allow your staff to get to know each other but within boundaries that they themselves set. It’s up to the individual which “truth” they decide to share, which allows them to open up in a safe environment. While ideal as an onboarding tool, it can also be a great brainteaser for long-term staff, as they will need to come up with new “truths” that their colleagues don’t yet know.

Get out of the office

As fun as you can make your home base, sometimes your team needs fresh air and a change of venue. Give these out-of-office adventures a try.

  1. Volunteer. Donating time towards a good cause is good for personal karma and also great for team bonding. Children’s hospitals, soup kitchens, and wilderness beautification are just a few of the many options out there that welcome large groups. Also consider allowing your staff to use their professional skills (copywriting, website design, marketing) to help short-staffed nonprofits.
  2. Underwrite a mystery dinner. At the end of a long day (or week) a nice dinner out can be just the thing to allow your employees to blow off steam and break bread as an extended family. The twist here is that the location and guest list will remain a mystery until the night of the event. Mix and match different teams to a variety of restaurants or staff members’ houses. Throw in an added perk with after-dinner drinks or dessert at one location so everyone can reconnect and share stories.
  3. Discover someplace new. A great night out can be perfect for some, but not all. Parents with young kids, people with two jobs, and many others may be much more likely to participate in a daytime outing. So take the day, pile into cars or a chartered bus, and explore a new place. That quaint town by the lake, an unusual museum, or even a nearby nature walk followed by lunch.

Train them to save lives

In addition to the obvious health and safety benefits to good CPR training, there are some extra perks that make this an even more appealing team-building option.

  1. Save lives, increase morale. Many businesses struggle to combat the “punch the clock” mentality that can set in for employees who may only see your company as a direct deposit blip on their digital bank statement. That mindset can quickly change once staff members put their lives in each other’s hands. In addition, most CPR classes require group participation and pairing off in teams, a great way to spend quality time and build trust with co-workers.
  2. Get to know your first aid kit. For the vast majority of people, the first aid kit that hangs on the wall or sits lonely next to the microwave in the break room is a passive comfort but little else. Training turns that plastic box of unfamiliar contents into critical tools that can save a life. Seconds matter after an accident and if your staff has a firm grasp of the tools at its disposal, the safer everyone will be. And a group setting ensures that coworkers will hold each other accountable for the information – you all learned it, you all need to own it.
  3. Serve your community. When your staff walks away from an afternoon of CPR training with their workplace comrades, they will now be equipped to make a valuable safety contribution in their homes and communities. Something this simple, and seemingly self-serving, can make your company a force for greater good on the local level. This benefit can’t be measured on a balance sheet but will be made real by the confidence and security felt by those who “punch the clock” for you every day.

One Beat CPR can be a key partner in this valuable team training for your organization, and it can be done offsite or we can bring the classes to your workplace. Learn more through our online resource guide.

The ABCs of AEDs on onebeatcpr.com

The ABCs of AEDs

What you need to know to save lives

We’ve seen it in movies and on TV dozens of times. Grandpa collapses in a shopping mall, mom faints at the airport, or young John from sales loses his balance at the gym and suddenly passes out. A friend or relative leaps into action and they start CPR. In real life, more often, folks are may also reach for an Automated External Defibrillator (AED).

What is (and isn’t) an AED?

A defibrillator is a medical device that stops fibrillation, an erratic heartbeat, by distributing an electrical shock or pulse of approximately 300 joules to the heart. This restores the heart to normal by stopping its uncontrolled trembling. The AED was developed in 1965 by Frank Pantridge, a physician at the Royal Victoria Infirmary in Belfast, Northern Ireland.

The goal was to allow lay people without medical training to use this technology to assist those in the midst of sudden cardiac arrest or who experience arrhythmia (an uneven heartbeat). Frank was of the firm belief that anyone who could perform CPR could operate a defibrillator. Further, he advocated that they are installed beside fire extinguishers, as life was more important than property.

The original prototype ran off car batteries and weighed close to a whopping 155 pounds, compared to today’s models which have a relative feather-weight of just over four pounds. He first installed the “portable” defibrillator in an ambulance, which allowed for patients experiencing cardiac arrest to receive treatment prior to arrival at the hospital. The technology quickly spread to the United States.

One common misconception about AEDs is that they can be used when the heart flat lines, or ceases to beat at all (diehard fans of ER or Grey’s Anatomy can be forgiven this false assumption). Defibrillators typically don’t completely restart the heart, they reset our body’s natural pacemaker so it functions properly.

An AED is also not to be confused with similar devices, such as Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillators (ICDs) or Wearable Cardioverter Defibrillators (WCDs). ICDs are battery-powered devices that are surgically implanted under the skin and connect to the heart via thin wires. They monitor the heart and send a shock if they detect an abnormal rhythm. WCDs perform similar functions but can be worn underneath clothing as a combination garment and monitor.

How does an AED work?

While the very concept of saving another person’s life can be daunting for most of us, the modern AED has been designed to make this miraculous task surprisingly simple. Each AED contains adhesive pads with electrodes which the user attaches to the victim’s chest. This is a simplified system based on hospital defibrillators, which use conductive gel to move the electricity along and hand-held panels with plastic handles to prevent medical professionals from experiencing the shock.

Proper placement of these pads is key to effectively assist the victim. There are two basic options:

  • Place one pad above and to the left of the heart, the other below and to the right.
  • Place the pads in front of and behind the heart.

The electrodes provide the AED’s computer with crucial information about the heart’s rhythm, that allows it to determine whether an electric shock is necessary and then to provide that shock. AEDs can be used on adults and children as young as 12 months (some devices have specially-sized pads for kids).

When should I use an AED?

Time is of the essence when a person goes into cardiac arrest. Most incidents stem from ventricular fibrillation (VF), a rapid and unsynchronized rhythm that begins in the heart’s lower chambers, or ventricles. Experts estimate that a victim’s chance of survival drops by seven to 10 percent every minute that a normal heartbeat isn’t restored.

First, be sure the person is actually in cardiac arrest. If you see them faint or come upon them already unconscious, confirm that they don’t respond to speaking, shouting, or shaking. In the case of an infant or young child, avoid shaking and instead give them a gentle but firm pinch. Check for breathing and a pulse. If neither is present, call 9-1-1, begin CPR, and seek out an AED.

You can often find AEDs in settings where crowds gather, such as schools, airports, gyms, malls, pools, hotels, and sports venues. They are easily recognizable and look much like a large first-aid kit, often with a heart logo emblazoned on the front.

Clear other bystanders from the immediate area, as touching the victim can interfere with the AED’s readings. Most AEDs provide voice commands that take you through each step of its use. Again, CPR is a key tool and should be administered before or after a shock. The device will likely instruct you when to begin CPR.

The effectiveness of AEDs can be profound. The American Heart Association estimates that survival rates double when bystanders use AEDs before emergency responders arrive. One Beat CPR can be a valuable partner in your organization’s AED purchases and training. You can learn more at our online store and resource guide.

What's in Your First Aid Kit? on onebeatcpr.com

What’s in Your First Aid Kit?

In case of a medical emergency, you’ll be glad you checked

At one point or another, it’s happened to all of us. We hurt ourselves, go dig out the first aid kit, and quickly discover that what we need isn’t in there. Not only is this frustrating, but it could also end up being a real problem for a serious injury.

Most homes and workplaces have first aid kits, but how often does anybody really check to see whether it’s well-stocked or replace missing items? In the event of an emergency, this small box may make a huge difference, which is why it has to contain the essentials.

How to choose the right kit

Before you know what your first aid kit should contain, it’s important to think about your situation. If, for example, you have young children, you’ll want it to include things like a thermometer, bulb suction device, and maybe some colorful adhesive bandages. If you do a lot of hiking or camping, you’ll want to consider a larger kit with items such as tourniquets that can help with more severe injuries. If you drive a lot, it may be a good idea to keep your kit in your car or get a separate one.

What every kit should have

No matter who the kit may be for, it is important that it at least has the basics. The Red Cross has an extensive list of what this should include and the quantities. Here’s a brief rundown:

  • Gauze
  • Bandages
  • Medical tape
  • Aspirin
  • Antibiotic ointment
  • Cold compress
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Tweezers
  • First aid instruction book

First aid kit tips

Keep it in a centralized spot

The only thing worse than not finding what you need in a first aid kit is not being able to find the kit at all. Whether at home or in an office, everyone should know where it is and be able to get to it quickly.

Check it regularly

You just never know if somebody may have taken something out of the kit, which is why it should be checked periodically.

Make replacements

Certain things in the kit – like creams and ointments – have expiration dates. Replacing these items before they become old or ineffective is important.

What businesses need to know about first aid kits

All businesses have to adhere to the regulations of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), and one rule stipulates that “adequate first aid supplies” must be on hand. Although the agency doesn’t have specific first aid kit content requirements, employers need to “ensure that reasonably anticipated supplies are available.”

Businesses also have to augment their kits if need be for changing circumstances. And if there is a chance that employees will come into contact with blood or other infectious materials while using any first aid supplies, an employer needs to provide personal protective equipment, including gowns, gloves, and masks.

So, which kit should you buy?

This one is really up to you. There are numerous first aid kits available, and most of them can probably give you what you need. This guide covers some of the best kits for the home, office, and car. The important thing is that you don’t buy a kit and then just forget about it (or forget where you put it).

And you should know how to effectively use everything in it. At One Beat CPR, we offer a class that will help you learn what to do in the event of an emergency, including how to handle broken bones, stings, and bleeding. Check out our first aid class schedule here and if you have any questions, please contact us.

Just Who is this Heimlich Guy, Anyway? on onebeatcpr.com

Just Who is this Heimlich Guy, Anyway?

Everything you need to know about the Heimlich Maneuver

Thanks to movies and television, we’ve all probably wondered what we would do if we’re dining in a restaurant and someone started choking on their dinner. The Heimlich Maneuver has been dramatized over and over again, but would we actually feel comfortable doing it at the moment?

The method has been known to save lives, but there’s also been some controversy over whether it’s the best method out there, as well as what it should be called. Here’s a brief look at the background of Dr. Henry Heimlich, his ground-breaking maneuver, and how to do it.

Heimlich’s history

Dr. Henry J. Heimlich was a thoracic surgeon who made several impactful discoveries during his lifetime. His research was conducted with the help of the Heimlich Institute in Cincinnati, of which he was president.  He had many medical accomplishments, among them developing a treatment for victims suffering from trachoma, and acting as the first American surgeon to perform a reversed gastric tube operation, which replaces the esophagus.

According to Dr. Heimlich’s memorial website, still operated in his honor since his death in 2016, he invented the Heimlich Maneuver in 1974 when he heard that thousands of Americans die every year from choking. After years of research, he then discovered a way to force trapped air out from the lungs that would apply enough pressure to remove the obstruction from a person’s windpipe.

Because the maneuver is pretty simple for anyone to perform in a crisis, it became very popular and is still attributed to saving lives every year, according to the Heimlich website.

After a 1985 announcement from the Surgeon General claimed that the method was the only way to save choking victims, the American Red Cross recommended the Heimlich Maneuver, under that name. But in 2006, the organization removed “Heimlich” from the name and instead referred to the maneuver as “abdominal thrusts,” which is how it’s still termed today.

The Red Cross now recommends pairing the abdominal thrusts with blows to the back between the shoulder blades when someone is choking. Dr. Heimlich asked the Red Cross to remove his name from this new form of his method since he did not condone pairing his maneuver with the blows to the back.

How to perform the Heimlich Maneuver

To perform the Heimlich Maneuver the way Heimlich had intended it, and how the Red Cross still recommends you perform the abdominal thrusts, take the following steps:

  1. Stand behind the victim and wrap your arms around their waist.
  2. Make a fist, placing the thumb side of the fist against the victim’s upper abdomen, below their ribcage but above their navel.
  3. Grasping your fist with the other hand, press into the abdomen with quick, upward pressure. Make sure you’re not squeezing the ribcage but confining the thrust to your fist.
  4. Repeat until the obstruction is expelled.

The American Red Cross recommends that the above procedure is performed only after five back blows have been given to the victim. This is done by giving them five hits with the heel of your hand between their shoulder blades after bending the person forward at the waist.

The recommended procedure is then to continue the steps – five back blows followed by five abdominal thrusts – until the victim is no longer choking. Before performing any method on any victim, however, the Red Cross advises to call 9-1-1.

What if the victim is lying down or unconscious?

If this is the case, give the victim four upward thrusts with the heel of your hand just above the waistline, while straddling the victim. Repeat several times if necessary.

While the American Red Cross and other health organizations like the American Heart Association have modified Dr. Heimlich’s original method, his ground-breaking work popularized a new life-saving method for choking victims, and he won the Lasker-Bloomberg Public Service Award in 1984.

For more information about CPR, AED, and first aid training in your area, get in touch with One Beat CPR. We offer a variety of lifesaving education classes that will help families, educators, or companies deal with emergency situations.

Is Pet First Aid Really a Thing? on onebeatcpr.com

Is Pet First Aid Really a Thing?

It is, and you can use it to save the life of your furry best friend

For most of us, our pets aren’t just pets. If you call your dog or cat your “baby” or refer to yourself as his or her parent, you are certainly not alone. And because our pets are so important to us, we want them to be as happy and healthy as possible. But would you know what to do if they needed immediate medical help? These first aid tips can help you prepare ahead of time.

Pay attention

You know your pet better than anyone, so you should be able to spot things that are out of the ordinary. If they’re not eating or drinking as much and aren’t as active as usual, these could be signs that something is wrong. You may want to check their vital signs – including pulse and temperature – on a regular basis so you know what’s normal.

Common pet emergencies

Choking

Signs of choking include coughing and trouble breathing, and a dog or cat may also paw at their mouth. You should try to look into their mouth to see if you locate the item. If you see it, you may be able to use a tool like tweezers to get it out. You’ll need to be careful, however, as a panicky pet is more likely to bite. Even if you are able to get the obstruction out, it’s important to have your pet looked at by a doctor.

Bleeding

If you have or have had young children, you know how easily they can get cuts and scratches. And while pets are usually a little savvier, if they spend a lot of time outdoors, chances are they come inside with their own cuts periodically. While most of these probably aren’t serious, if you notice a lot of blood, you’ll need to act. It is important to quickly find the wound and put a cloth or towel over it and keep the pressure on it for at least a few minutes. If this isn’t effective, you will need to create a tourniquet before taking your pet to the vet.

Heatstroke

Because of our hot climate in South Florida, heatstroke is something we all especially need to be aware of. Signs include panting, labored breathing, and possible vomiting. It’s important to get your pet cooled quickly, and you can do this by wrapping them in towels soaked in lukewarm water so they don’t become cooled too quickly. Putting them in front of a fan and giving them water can also be helpful.

What about dogs and chocolate?

While there are many types of foods dogs shouldn’t be eating, chocolate may be the worst, as it can cause seizures, vomiting, and even death. If you see your dog eat a large amount of chocolate, you’ll need to see a vet as soon as possible. The same is true if you only suspect that it was consumed; this is another instance when knowing what’s normal and what’s not with your dog’s behavior will come in handy.

What should you do if your pet collapses?

Time is of the essence if your pet collapses. The CPR procedure in pets is similar to the one used to resuscitate people, but with some key differences. The first thing you’ll need to do is check to see if they’re breathing. If they aren’t, you will have to start compressions.

  • For cats and small dogs, you need to put the heel of one hand over their heart and the other hand on top of it.
  • For dogs that have a deep chest, you should put the heel of one hand on the widest part of the chest and put the other hand on top of it.
  • For dogs that are more barrel-chested, you will put one hand on the widest part of the sternum and put your other hand on top of it. You will want to ensure your shoulders are directly above your hands.

With your hands in the proper position, you will then push at a rate of about 100 compressions per minute, compressing 1/3 to 1/2 the width of their chest. After 30 compressions without any response, you will need to give rescue breaths. This entails closing your pet’s mouth and extending their neck. You will then cover their nose with your mouth and exhale enough so you see their chest rise. After a second rescue breath, you’ll need to resume CPR. You should continue this pattern until your pet starts breathing on their own or you get to your vet.

Know what to do in the event of an emergency

Because you want your pets to always be cared for, it’s important to know what to do if they’re in distress. At One Beat CPR, while we don’t offer classes specifically for rendering aid to pets, we teach life-saving skills that can be used on any person, of any age. And these skills just might help in an emergency involving the four-legged members of your family as well. Check out our class schedule here.

Aspirin and Cardiovascular Health on onebeatcpr.com

Aspirin and Cardiovascular Health

Why aspirin remains a wonder drug for the heart

Aspirin is in the Guinness Book of World Records.

In 1950, this pain-relieving drug was the most frequently-sold painkiller, setting new records. While the substances inside the drug have been used for medicinal purposes for thousands of years, aspirin, as it exists today, is a fairly recent development.

One of the drug’s most important benefits is its impact on heart health. And while aspirin has life-saving properties, there are certain risks to be aware of before you take it. Always consult with a doctor before starting any kind of medication regimen.

The history of aspirin

In 1897, acetylsalicylic acid was termed “aspirin by the Bayer Company, and this was the first time the drug was marketed. However, researchers think that salicylic acid was used up to 4,000 years ago when the Sumerians discovered that the willow tree offered pain remedies. Salicylic acid is extracted from the bark of the willow tree, among other kinds of trees, and is in the salicylates group.

The Royal Society published a report on willow bark in 1763, discussing how it can cure fevers. And in 1853, Charles Frederic Gerhardt, a French scientist, synthesized acetylsalicylic acid for the first time.

But aspirin didn’t become mainstream as a cardiovascular remedy until about the 1940s when Dr. Lawrence L. Craven started prescribing aspirin for male patients to prevent clots in the arteries of the heart. A controlled trial in 1974 revealed that heart attack deaths were reduced up to 25% from the use of aspirin. Since then, numerous other studies have shown a reduction in cardiovascular events when patients take aspirin. Now, current health organizations like the American Heart Association (AHA) embrace aspirin as an effective preventative measure and treatment for those at risk for cardiovascular issues.

Aspirin and heart health

Many medical professionals today will recommend a daily dose of aspirin after a patient experiences serious issues like a heart attack or stroke.

This is because aspirin can help prevent blood clotting. Our bodies have natural platelets that go into action when we get wounds. These platelets build up and essentially form a seal to stop any bleeding.

Atherosclerosis is the process in which fatty deposits of cholesterol buildup in arteries and can eventually lead to blood clots that block the arteries. This form of buildup is called plaque, which usually affects large or medium-sized arteries. This is how clots can block blood flow to the heart, which is the major cause of heart attacks.

Aspirin reduces the clumping of our platelets, which can prevent heart attacks from occurring.

However, because aspirin can increase bleeding in general, Harvard Men’s Health Watch reports that most doctors today recommend small daily doses, about 81 mg a day, which is known as “baby” aspirin. This is the standard recommendation for preventative purposes.

If someone is experiencing heart attack symptoms, an emergency dose of 325 mg is recommended, which is a full, adult dose. But the American Heart Association first says to call 9-1-1 before taking or administering anything, as many people tend to (improperly) wait for the drug to kick in to see if they can avoid going to the hospital.

This can be a life-threatening mistake, and you should always seek emergency medical help if you think you are having heart attack symptoms. These include chest tightness or discomfort, shortness of breath, or lightheadedness, among others. The AHA also recommends that people with a high risk of heart attack, or those who have survived a heart attack, should also take a low dose of aspirin daily.

Risks of taking aspirin

Even though aspirin can prevent life-threatening issues, the American Heart Association lists some risks of taking the drug. Complications can arise if you have an aspirin allergy, drink alcohol regularly, are at risk of hemorrhagic stroke or gastrointestinal bleeding, or are going to have any medical or dental procedures.

People are at risk in these situations because aspirin thins the blood, thus making it harder to clot when a blood condition exists or when undergoing serious surgical procedures.

If someone is experiencing a stroke, the AHA does not recommend that they take aspirin. This is because blood thinning may actually make bleeding strokes more severe – bleeding strokes are those that are not caused by blood clots (though other types are).

Before making any decisions about taking aspirin regularly, talk to your doctor. And to learn more about your training options for serious, life-threatening emergencies, get in touch with One Beat CPR today. We offer a variety of courses, including First Aid and CPR and AED training programs – all of which can save a life.

4 Workplace Wellness Trends to Watch for in 2018 on onebeatcpr.com

4 Workplace Wellness Trends to Watch for in 2018

Unhealthy lifestyle choices and chronic disease cost businesses billions in healthcare every year. Corporate wellness programs encourage individuals to make their health a priority.

Employers play an important role in helping their workers get healthy with programs and incentives – both to create a healthier, happier workforce as well as to save on long-term medical costs. Here are four corporate wellness trends making their way into the workplace this year:

1. Personalized wellness services

Health is highly personal, and a “one-size-fits-all” approach won’t meet every employee’s individual needs. What’s vital to one person may be unimportant to another.

Companies are branching out and offering more personalized wellness services to serve employees efficiently. Many employers offer access to an individual health coach or incentivize good habits like exercise and healthy eating.

Companies also use digital platforms and online portals that can help employees keep track of their health and wellness goals. New fitness technology, like wearable fitness trackers and pedometers, makes it easy for companies to tailor programs and health tracking to individuals.

Individual health coaching, online health forums and portals, and fitness trackers such as Fitbit all serve as interactive experiences for employees. Utilizing these tools and programs can encourage workers to engage with wellness services.

2. A holistic approach

In the early days of corporate wellness initiatives, most programs were broad in nature and focused on a few key aspects of health. These traditional services typically covered things like weight management and quitting tobacco.

Today’s companies are incorporating programs that encompass more areas of employee health. This holistic approach means things like sleep and stress get just as much attention as other healthy habits. Even financial health programs are being instituted because of the tangible link between financial stress and physical health issues. By addressing more aspects of health and wellness, these programs can be more effective than the simpler programs dedicated only to one or two habits.

And the benefits aren’t just altruistic. Sleep deprivation and stress are serious problems for today’s workforce. Studies estimate that sleep deprivation costs U.S. employers up to $411 billion each year. Other studies have shown that workplace stress causes up to 120,000 deaths each year.

By encouraging employees not to work excessive overtime hours late into the night, or providing a flexible schedule, employers are helping workers lower stress and get adequate sleep – plus boosting productivity and engagement, and potentially lowering healthcare costs.

3. Integrating workplace options for wellness

Another trend cropping up in workplace wellness is the effort to integrate healthy options for employees.

Many individuals rely on the food provided by their workplace. Companies are working to make nourishing food available in on-site cafeterias. Vending machines that would normally hold chips and cookies are starting to include snacks like mixed nuts, healthy juices, and cut veggies. Providing these items gives employees the chance to make healthful choices.

Employers are also starting to set up workstations designed to discourage workers from being sedentary all day long. Sitting in front of a computer for long hours can result in eye strain, poor posture, and carpal tunnel syndrome, not to mention unhealthy metabolic changes with long-term health effects. Standing desks and treadmill walking desks are easy to install and they can be a great alternative for employees who would otherwise be sitting for most of the day.

4. Emergency Training

A recent survey conducted by the American Heart Association revealed that most US employees do not know how to respond to a workplace emergency like the sudden cardiac arrest. Half of those surveyed were not able to locate an automated external defibrillator (AED) at their office.

Although workplaces are making strides in providing employees holistic wellness programs, they are behind in preparing their workers for emergency situations at work. Most of the survey participants did not have access to CPR or basic first aid training.

Training employees how to perform CPR, use AEDs, or provide basic first aid can save lives. In a single year, 475,000 Americans die from cardiac arrest, and the survival rate of the 356,000 that occur outside of a hospital setting is only about 10 percent.

CPR saves lives by combining breathing into the mouth and chest compressions to keep oxygenated blood moving through the body when the heart has stopped. The American Heart Association says that “CPR can double or triple chances of survival after cardiac arrest.” And because an AED resets the heart’s rhythm with electric pulses, it is even more impactful in increasing survival rates in cases of cardiac arrest.

Training employees to respond in emergency situations like these is a critical part of workplace wellness.

At One Beat CPR + AED, we are dedicated to educating everyone about responding to an emergency, and we provide American Heart Association-certified CPR and AED training for groups and individuals. For more information, reach out to us today at 954-321-5305 or fill out our contact form.

Women Receive CPR Less Often Than Men on onebeatcpr.com

Women Receive CPR Less Often Than Men

A study reveals more women die from cardiac arrest – because bystanders may be afraid of performing CPR

A recent study sponsored by the American Heart Association (AHA) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) looked at almost 20,000 cases of cardiac arrest. The study found that only 39% of women experiencing cardiac arrest in public were given CPR, whereas 45% of men received it.

The men studied were 23% more likely to survive.

Women and heart disease

Heart attacks and cardiac arrest are sometimes thought of as a male issue, but women suffer from these conditions and heart disease overall at alarming rates:

  • “Heart disease is the leading cause of death of American women, killing more than a third of them.”
  • “More than 200,000 women die each year from heart attacks – five times as many women as breast cancer.”
  • “More than 159,000 women die each year of congestive heart failure, accounting for 56.3% of all heart failure deaths.”

These numbers are a bit lower but similar in scope to the numbers for men. So, why the disparity in the number of female lives saved thanks to CPR?

Fear of rendering aid

While the study shows that strangers are more willing to help men experiencing cardiac arrest than women, “no gender difference was apparent in CPR rates for people who had taken ill at home, where a rescuer is more likely to know the person needing help.”

Some of the reasons cited:

  • “’It can be kind of daunting thinking about pushing hard and fast on the center of a woman’s chest’ making some people fearful of hurting the woman,’ said Audrey Blewer, a University of Pennsylvania researcher who led the study. …
  • Another study leader, Dr. Benjamin Abella, said that bystanders are worried about moving a woman’s clothes or touching her breasts, despite the fact that if you administer CPR in the correct manner, you wouldn’t even need to do this.”

There is also fear about being held legally liable for rendering aid that could harm someone, though as we’ve covered in a previous blog, every state has Good Samaritan laws on the books that protect people trying to save a life. In some states, however, you do need to be certified in CPR to have protection under these laws.

What about mouth-to-mouth resuscitation?

When most of us think of CPR, we think of pressing on the chest and mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. But The American Heart Association has recently revised CPR procedures to make rescue breathing optional when rendering care to adults or teens. This “hands-only CPR” is simple and it works:

  • A study led by Dr. Ken Nagao at Tokyo’s Surugadai Nihon University Hospital examined the implications of this failure to respond. Cardiac arrest victims on whom no CPR was applied (approximately 70% of 4,068 incidents) were not only far less likely to survive, their chances of suffering brain damage from the incident increased if they did pull through.
  • 18% of the victims in the study received traditional CPR that included mouth-to-mouth. Those patients saw an improved survival and recovery rate. 11% of those in the study had the chest-compression-only technique applied – and they were 2.2 times less likely to experience brain damage than those who didn’t receive any CPR at all.
  • Hands-only CPR cannot be used on small children and infants, nor individuals who have been found unconscious or definitively suffered the respiratory failure that leads to cardiac arrest. For greater detail, read our blog: “Hands-Only CPR vs. Traditional CPR.”

A 3-hour class gets you certified

Three hours is all it takes to become CPR and AED certified. This is a skill that you can carry with you the rest of your life and you’ll be prepared to take life-saving action on a moment’s notice – on men, women, or children – whether they are strangers or loved ones.

Help reverse the statistics and learn to save lives equally.

One Beat CPR+AED offers American Heart Association-certified CPR and AED courses to South Florida businesses, schools, medical professionals, families, and individuals. Call 1-800-ONE-BEAT for the latest class schedule, or connect with us online.

More Insight on "Hands-Only CPR” on onebeatcpr.com

More Insight on “Hands-Only CPR”

Hands-only CPR can be performed by anyone and learned in as little as a minute – and alleviates some concerns about providing aid

Most of us wouldn’t hesitate to help a person in distress. It’s human nature. We also would do it because we hope that a stranger would do the same for us.

There are some obstacles for some people, however. Take performing CPR, for example. One of the biggest concerns registered by individuals – especially those who haven’t undergone training – is that they’ll do it incorrectly and cause more harm than good. Others are worried about performing the mouth-to-mouth (rescue breathing) component on a stranger.

There’s encouraging news all the way around, though. The American Heart Association now recommends what’s known as “hands-only CPR” in many situations.

Voicing their fears

In a 2016 survey, the AHA asked respondents why they didn’t perform CPR on someone in cardiac arrest despite having the opportunity. The top reason was fear of legal consequences if something went wrong, shared by 31%. The other reasons:

  • 28% said their skills weren’t up to date
  • 28% said they were afraid they would hurt the person
  • 24% said that CPR is too complicated
  • 18% said they just didn’t feel confident performing the steps
  • 16% said they had no training
  • 14% said they didn’t want to give the rescue breaths
  • 14% said they didn’t believe it would make a difference

If you look at these statistics, you see that many people refrain simply because they’re unsure – whether it’s lack of training, or even being unsure of whether it will help. This is why it’s so important to know about hands-only CPR.

The benefit of hands-only CPR

Hands-only CPR is CPR without rescue breaths. The AHA recommends it is because it’s very easy to do, it always some of the concerns people have about performing CPR, and it’s effective.

There are only two steps, and you don’t need to have formal training in order to perform hands-only CPR on someone – though training is beneficial. Many individuals can perform this life-saving act after watching a short instructional video online:

You’ll learn the two easy steps:

  1. Call 911 to summon emergency help
  2. Push hard and fast in the center of the chest. The minimum rate you should push is 100 beats per minute. How fast is that? Match the beat of the Bee Gees’ classic song “Stayin’ Alive” and you’ve got it.

The AHA says that hands-only CPR performed in the first few minutes of cardiac arrest for an adult victim has been shown to be as effective as CPR with breaths. That said, full CPR still needs to be done in several cases, including when the victim has been found unconscious for an unknown amount of time, when you know someone has had respiratory failure leading to cardiac arrest, or for pre-teen children or infants.

The key here is oxygen; hands-only CPR works when a victim has enough of it left. When oxygen levels are depleted, rescue breathing is required.

People who have had official CPR training are more likely to provide better chest compressions, but any attempt at CPR is usually better than none at all. The AHA observes that official training and certification can make you more confident about your life-saving skills – especially for infants, children, victims of drowning, or people who collapse due to breathing problems – because you’re also able to administer rescue breaths.

If you know nothing about CPR, you can learn enough to save a life by watching this video. Get complete training and certification, however, for far better and more comprehensive life-saving skills.

How New Tech May Be Used to Help Save Lives on onebeatcpr.com

How New Tech May Be Used to Help Save Lives

Five developments that could prove to be invaluable

Technology evolves at such a quick pace that often something seen as innovative one day is viewed as antiquated the next month. And while some tech seems to be superfluous (do we really need to upgrade our phones every year?), other new inventions can literally be lifesavers. Here are some of the latest developments in the world of CPR and first aid:

Drones

If there has been one piece of new technology that’s taken the world by storm in recent years, it is drones. In addition to hobbyists, many companies are starting to take advantage of drones, and we may soon see them in response to medical emergencies.

In Sweden, experiments were conducted that involved sending drones equipped with AEDs to 18 sites where people had cardiac arrests. Researchers found that it took about 20 minutes for EMS workers to arrive on the scene after getting a call. With the drones, it was only about five minutes.

Augmented reality

Augmented reality (AR) is another new tech that has gotten a lot of buzzes lately, especially when it comes to games. But AR could also be instrumental for CPR training. The American Heart Association has developed an AR app that first surveys the area to find a good location to perform CPR. It then walks through the necessary steps for hands-only CPR, giving players scores for the rate and depth of chest compressions.

Automated CPR

In order to keep someone alive who is experiencing cardiac arrest, chest compressions have to be continuous. But when the victim needs to be moved or perhaps an EMS worker takes over for a bystander, they can be interrupted. This is why machines utilizing a compression band or piston have been developed that administer chest compressions mechanically.

Mobile EKG

An electrocardiogram (EKG) is an excellent way to monitor heart health, but it would be impossible for people to walk around with an EKG machine. But, thanks to Kardia, they don’t have to.

Touted as “the world’s first medical-grade 30-second EKG,” this is a small card outfitted with sensors that can be linked to a mobile device. In addition to taking their own EKG, the results can be transmitted to a doctor immediately. Kardia can also identify early warnings signs of a heart attack.

Smart first aid kit

In the event of some sort of medical emergency at home or on the job, just finding the first aid kit can be a challenge. But when you do track it down, you may not have any idea what’s in there or where the important items at the moment are. This was the thought process behind the GALE smart first aid kit.

Not only are their well-organized compartments for items to help with things like cuts, burns, and bone fractures, users can get quick digital instructions on what to do. If need be, GALE can also put someone in touch with a medical professional via a video call.

All of this new tech is exciting, but it is not yet widely used and probably won’t be for a while. Until the day these advances are mainstream, it’s best to be proactive. Take a CPR class and learn how to use an AED – and be prepared to save a life now.

Check out our class schedules here, and if you have any questions, please contact us.