The above chart from the Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation really says it all: 326,000 people in the U.S. die each year from Sudden Cardiac Arrest, which is roughly equivalent to the approximate number of deaths from all the diseases on the right of the chart combined.
If you’re surprised by the shocking statistic on this life-threatening condition that can strike so many of us, you’re not alone. That’s why it’s so crucial during to bring yourself (and all those close to you at work and at home) up to speed on what Sudden Cardiac Arrest is and what you can do to treat a victim immediately.
We don’t know exactly how to prevent Sudden Cardiac Arrest from happening, but we do know the type of risk factors that might be high contributors to its occurrence. Some of these include:
- Coronary artery disease
- High blood pressure
- A family history of heart disease
- A thick-walled heart (cardiomyopathy)
- Sedentary, non-active lifestyle
- Recreational drug use
- Episodes of fainting due to an unknown cause
If you have a history of cardiac arrest in your family, the risk of SCA increases two-fold.
The 10-Minute Survival Window
It can’t be stated enough – for every minute that passes once someone goes into Sudden Cardiac Arrest, the chance of that victim’s survival decreases by up to 10%. That means the person has 10 minutes maximum to be saved.
Yes, you need to make sure someone nearby calls 9-1-1 immediately. But even when the call is placed, with only that much time on the clock, one thing is clear:
You can’t wait for the paramedics to arrive to act.
Think about this all-too-common scenario for a moment:
- You discover a co-worker lying on the floor, unresponsive and not breathing normally. Perhaps it’s been a couple minutes since they collapsed and went into SCA.
- You yell for someone nearby to call 9-1-1.
- The paramedics have been contacted. But it’s going to take them several minutes to get there. And once they do arrive, what if you’re in a high-rise office building on the 37th floor? Add even more time.
The chances of that victim’s survival if you did nothing in the interim of the paramedics arriving would quickly go from slim to none.
With this in mind, you can quickly see why saving that person’s life can come down to whether or not the closest person to the victim knows how to do two things: Administer CPR and operate an Automated External Defibrillator (AED).
Unfortunately, according to the Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation, only 2% of victims are treated with AEDs by a bystander. Only 1/3 of those bystanders are able to administer CPR to the victim.
Clearly, there’s a lot more work to be done in the way of educating people on how to perform CPR and operate an AED. Especially when you consider how the odds of survival improve when a bystander is equipped with the knowledge on exactly what to do. Even though only about 1 in 10 victims of SCA of any age survive, those odds improve to about 4 in 10 when the bystander administers CPR and uses an AED on the victim quickly.
What’s it worth to you to know how to save a life?
You don’t get a second chance to save someone going into Sudden Cardiac Arrest if you don’t know what to do. It could happen at any moment to someone you love at home or a co-worker in your office or warehouse. When – not if – it does, do you want to be the person who asks, “Does anybody know how to give CPR?” or“Does anybody know if we have an AED?” I doubt it.
So don’t put yourself in that position to begin with: Get the life saving training from one of our safety consultants at SOS Technologies. In less than half a day, we can come into your environment and train up to 10 people at a time on how to effectively perform CPR and operate an AED. Give SOS a call today at 888.705.6100 or email us at email@example.com.