Medical emergencies can occur anytime and anywhere, including the workplace. Would your employees know what to do if they came across someone choking or unconscious? More specifically, would they know how to administer CPR?
The American Heart Association (AHA) recently updated CPR guidelines in two key ways: 1) increasing the rate of chest compressions and 2) encouraging people to call 911 and put the dispatcher on speakerphone for direct assistance. While administering CPR is a vital skill for healthcare professionals and emergency technicians, the reality is that not everyone is formally trained. These changes are designed to simplify hands-only CPR and make it more accessible for untrained “bystanders,” which can greatly increase a victim’s chances of survival.
Read on to learn more about the situations demanding quick response, mistakes to avoid when administering CPR and the latest recommendations by the AHA.
There are a number of reasons why you might need to perform CPR in the workplace. The quicker you recognize the emergency situation, the quicker you can respond with the proper adult CPR steps.
Especially for an untrained or uninformed employee, the idea of performing CPR can be downright scary. Most people would rather leave it in the hands (literally) of an emergency technician or healthcare professional. But understanding the basic procedures and putting them to use in the critical first minutes can be a matter of life or death for the victim.
Before we review the right way to perform CPR, according to the AHA, let’s look at the ways you may get it wrong. (Keep in mind that most experts recognize that untrained, non-medical individuals may be uncomfortable with mouth-to-mouth contact – and will therefore focus more on hands-only CPR.)
The mistakes to avoid include:
So what’s changed with CPR instruction? The AHA updated the resuscitation guidelines to include a new rate of chest compressions; 100 to 120 compressions per minute compared to the previous rate of “at least 100” compressions per minute.
The update also calls for untrained bystanders to make use of mobile technology by calling 911 and using the speakerphone. This way, dispatchers can advise them on using hands-only CPR, without breaths. Those trained in CPR, on the other hand, are expected to perform breaths, providing two breaths every 30 compressions.
The timing of the last update was in 2010, when the AHA recommended a change in steps for CPR: chest compressions first, followed by clearing the airway and giving mouth-to mouth breathing. At this time, the AHA also encouraged the use of hands-only CPR to non-medical individuals who may be uncomfortable with mouth-to-mouth breathing.
You play an important role in empowering your employees with the latest safety guidelines. Our fully updated ComplyRight CPR and Choking Posters provide practical, step-by-step instruction on the newest CPR techniques, which can help save lives.
Although you may be required to update your choking poster if you’re in the restaurant industry in certain states, we recommend educating employees on proper CPR guidelines as a best practice for any business.
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