If someone in your community suffers a sudden cardiac arrest, how likely is he or she to survive?
Improving survival from cardiac arrest is not complicated, but it is not easy. The very nature of cardiac arrest requires bystanders to be ready, willing, and able to act. Additionally, to be successful their actions in combination with care provided by our EMS, fire and first responder agencies must occur within a system that coordinates and integrates each facet of care into a choreographed group effort, focusing on neurologically intact survival to discharge from the hospital.
The Citizen CPR Foundation is striving to help communities improve their system of care for cardiac arrest and increase the chances that citizens suffering a cardiovascular emergency will have the best possible outcome and chance for survival.
Most cardiac arrests occur outside a hospital: How many residents and public safety officials in your community can recognize the symptoms of cardiac arrest and know how to get help “on the way, right away”?
Who knows Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) in your community and is prepared and willing to administer CPR when necessary?
Does your community’s law enforcement agency respond to medical emergencies? Are they trained and equipped with Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs)? Do they have policies that dispatch them to calls that may in fact be cases of sudden cardiac arrest?
Do your schools and municipal buildings have AEDs? Are they maintained and accessible? Do these locations have well thought out and tested emergency response plans?
Are AED locations mapped and integrated with your 911 system?
Do your Emergency Medical Services (EMS) providers practice “high-performance” CPR and have supportive protocols, technology and equipment?
The answers to these questions could determine whether or not your community qualifies as a HEARTSafe Community.
Designation as a HEARTSafe Community represents a coordinated effort by police departments, fire departments, emergency medical services, the city/town, schools, and businesses - a community commitment to saving lives!
By becoming a HEARTSafe Community, your town, city officials, and citizens will be recognized for taking the time, and making the effort to optimize each link in the Chain of Survival – to SAVE LIVES!