CPR Certification Across the Nation: How Survival Rates from Sudden Cardiac Arrest Differ All over America and What We Can Do

CPR Certification Across the Nation: How Survival Rates from Sudden Cardiac Arrest Differ All over America and What We Can Do

Mackenzie Thompson

by Mackenzie Thompson

Life Saver, NHCPS

posted on Dec 17, 2015, at 11:02 pm

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WHY IS IT THAT CARDIOPULMONARY RESUSCITATION INTERVENTION, OR CPR,  only seems to work on about five to 10 percent of victims of sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) outside of the hospital? What if I told you survival rates increased in specific areas, like Seattle and King County, tremendously?

The recent article by The New York Times, CPR Survival Rates Can Differ Greatly by City by Kira Peikoff, investigated this peculiar and inconsistent trend in America. In Seattle out-of-hospital CPR has improved survival rates to nearly 20% in the last seven years, whereas in other places across the country, like Detroit, the survival rate is a mere three percent.

CPR simply isn’t implemented, practiced and taught the same all over the world despite the continually updated and universally accepted American Heart Association guidelines. The article stated Dr. Graham Nichol of the University of Washington said cardiac arrest is a treatable condition if care is provided. This care, however, must be better. We couldn’t agree more

cpr being performed on patientIf you have a stroke, your chance of survival is pretty much the same, regardless of where in America you’re located, but for SCA it’s not the same case. Even inside of the hospital, where your doctors and nurses hold years of specialized training for emergencies just like this one, there are no national regulations as to what protocols work best when a patient is experiencing cardiac arrest.

SCA at a glance

We know that CPR is not a backup plan and that survival rates can improve. To better understand this, it’s important to understand the prevalence of SCA. Out-of-hospital SCA is far too common and the numbers aren’t getting any smaller. It is the leading cause of death in America, far surpassing any other cause of death.

The number of people who die each year from SCA is roughly equivalent to the number who die from Alzheimer’s disease, assault with firearms, breast cancer, cervical cancer, colorectal cancer, diabetes, HIV, house fires, motor vehicle accidents, prostate cancer and suicides combined. (Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation)

This is a mind-boggling tragedy. The SCA Foundation goes on to state that when bystander intervention through CPR and the use of an AED occurs in an emergency SCA, nearly half of victims survive, if done correctly.

What is the real solution to this disparity?

So, we know that proper CPR administration can save a victim’s life, but what can we actually do about this? First, we need everyone to be CPR certified. Not just that, but we also need those with CPR certification to also receive bi-yearly CPR recertification as a way to follow the continually updated AHA updates. The practice of chest compressions on humans to keep the heart pumping has been established since the 1800s (check out our History of CPR Certification Infographic and Blog post!), but is constantly being perfected to save more lives. Point blank: everyone should be CPR certified and should also be recertified every two years. In addition, CPR should be taught in accordance with the latest AHA standards and guidelines.

Be the change, be a life-saver with online CPR certification

So why aren’t more people getting CPR certification? Traditional classroom CPR certification is often hard to come by and may not be accessible, especially to laypersons. At NHCPS, we want everyone to find CPR certification as an accessible, simple-to-learn and easy to implement part of life. When you choose online CPR certification and online CPR recertification from NHCPS, you are doing more than checking off another skill on your resume or bucket list, you are a part of a much bigger movement.

NHCPS is proud to completely fund and own the Disque Foundation, a non-profit organization that spreads healthcare knowledge and technology both domestically and internationally to in-need and under-served parts of the world. The team at the Disque Foundation has been traveling all over the world, giving free CPR certifications to thousands. When you choose to purchase a course through NHCPS, all profits fund the Disque Foundation.

Make the change this year, become CPR certified. Spread the word and make a life-saving difference during the season of giving back.

Right now, NHCPS is participating in a “Buy One Give One” campaign, where you will receive a free online certification course when you purchase any course to give away to a friend, family member or co-worker. If you have any questions about our BOGO event, you can give us a call at (888) 688-3545.

About Mackenzie

Mackenzie is a lover of world travel, photography, design, style and Chinese cooking. She is passionate about working towards a purpose, recently graduated from Indiana University with a degree in Media and Marketing, and is currently residing in Manhattan.

Contact Mackenzie at mackenzie.thompson@nhcps.com.
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