Heart Health Month prompts Fire Rescue CPR classes
MURPHY (January 20, 2012) In celebration of Heart Health Month, commemorated nationally during February, Murphy Fire Rescue is offering free classes that could save or prolong the life of persons suffering from heart-related trauma, using either an AED or their hands alone, according to Fire Chief Mark Lee.
The 15-minute classes are scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 11 starting at 9 a.m. and continuing every 20 minutes. The last class of the day starts at 3 p.m. Classes are held in the Murphy Fire House, 206 North Murphy Road.
“Often the true first responders in a heart trauma event are people immediately around the victim. In some situations, an AED is available, but most times, there isn’t one. After completing the class, attendees will be able to deal with either situation,” he said.
AED stands for Automated External Defibrillator, a portable electronic device that automatically diagnoses a potentially life threatening cardiac arrest and treats the victim through defibrillation, the application of electrical impulses which stop the heart’s irregularity, allowing the heart to reestablish an effective rhythm.
The absence of an AED, however, requires “hands-only CPR” in order to restore the heart’s rhythm. CPR stands for cardiopulmonary resuscitation, chest compressions undertaken manually to stimulate the heart to restart a regular rhythm.
“In most cases, there is a small window for immediate action, before permanent damage occurs. These classes can make a difference in an individual’s life,” said Chief Lee.
In addition to the classes, the Feb. 11 sessions will provide opportunities for persons to sign up for the full CPR class, leading toward CPR certification.