As nurses, we all know basic life support, its our bread and butter of emergency care. However, we are not the only people capable of doing it! We should never be complacent with basic life support, your refresher every year is important and shouldn’t be seen as a chore. If you suffer a cardiac arrest out of hospital in the UK, you have less than a one in ten chance of surviving. In places such as Norway where CPR is more widely taught it is as high as four in ten. On the 16th October it was restart a heart day across the world and I had the pleasure of being able to teach at a hospital to the members of the public. Not only did I each adult CPR but child and baby too. It was amazing to show and explain to people from al different backgrounds and situations. I taught very young children, couples who wouldn’t know what to do if something happened to their child to member of staff who work in the hospital who aren’t clinical!
We hope that people would never need to use the training that we teach them however it’s simply not predictable who is ever going to be in that situation! Naturally some people were worried about having a go or engaging with the team however once I got started teaching one or two people a small crowd would start to gather and soon you would be teaching 5 or 6 people at the same time. Don’t forget that children can learnt too! There have been several cases where children have been able to save their parents life through CPR, they need a bit more perseverance to teach them but do not give up! Children are very valuable in these scenarios.
Do not be afraid of getting involved in your next restart a heart day! Find out if there is something going on in your trust next year and if not then why not? Question it and contact your resuscitation team. Doing this day did not only give me an opportunity to teach other people how to do CPR which may go on to help save someone’s life, but it also has massive implications for me too. I feel much more comfortable and confident to be able to have the conversation and teach families about if they know CPR and what to do in an emergency.
Check, Call and Compress!
Written by Lucy Mason (@MissLucyMay)