February is American Heart Month

February is American Heart Month, and this year the American Heart Association is putting an emphasis on more people getting CPR certified. But that’s not the only hurdle.

Every minute someone is in cardiac arrest their survival rate drops by 10%, according to Go Rescue Brands paramedic Rusty Lowe.

“Statistics show that on EMS arrival when EMS arrives if CPR isn’t being performed on the cardiac arrest victim the chances are less than 10% and they’re about 0%.” said Lowe.

The national average of people who could respond in a cardiac arrest situation is only 44%, while in Alabama its less than 10% of people.

Lowe says municipalities and paramedics are trying to get as many people as they can trained in CPR, adding there are two ways they’re doing that.

The first one is hands-on CPR where a person doesn’t have to go through a class. They will just learn where to put their hands and pump as fast as they can until help arrives. The other way is going through a more detailed class.

Kimberly Baldwin with the American Heart Association adds it’s an easy skill to learn and makes the difference between life or death.

“When someone faces a cardiac arrest, if there’s no intervention then that person will most certainly will not have a good outcome,” said Baldwin.

For more information about the American Heart Association, visit heart.org.

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