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Which Automated External Defibrillator (AED) is Right for You?

AED Buyer’s Guide: 5 Things to Consider When Choosing an AED

Why are AEDs so Important?

So you’ve decided to purchase an AED. Good for you! The statistics surrounding sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) are sobering, but your decision to buy an Automated External Defibrillator for your home or workplace may save a life. Here at Cardio Partners and AED.com, we’re ready to help you find the one that’s best for you or your organization!

Did you know that more than 350,000 Americans suffer from cardiac arrest each year? Approximately 10,000 of these occur in the workplace (OSHA) and a staggering 70% of out-of-hospital cardiac arrests occur at home. At least 20,000 lives could be saved annually by prompt use of AEDs (American Heart Association).

In other words, if you are called on to perform CPR or to administer a shock from an AED, you’re likely working to save the life of someone you know and love. The American Heart Association (AHA) also notes that communities with AED programs, which include comprehensive CPR and AED training, have achieved survival rates of 40% or higher for cardiac arrest victims.

AEDs save lives by restoring normal heart rhythms in individuals who suffer sudden cardiac arrest.

An AED is a small, portable and user-friendly electronic device that can automatically diagnose and respond to life-threatening heart rhythms. Most AEDs provide simple, easy-to-follow audio and visual instructions that bystanders can quickly comprehend and apply. Some AEDs advise the user when to administer the shock, while other AEDs may automatically apply a shock if the heart is arrhythmic.

So what are you waiting for? Here’s everything you need to know about finding the right AED for your home or business.

1) Price

As with any technology, prices for AEDs vary widely. When considering price, think about your needs, your training, and how often and under what conditions your AED is likely to be used.

recertified Cardiac Science Powerheart G3 comes in at a modest $595 while a new Zoll AED Pro is priced at $2895. Professionals rescuers can appreciate the Zoll’s See-Thru CPR® feature, which allows them to see a patient’s underlying cardiac rhythm during resuscitation efforts. This feature enables more consistent, interruption-free compressions.

2) Pads

When it comes to AED pads, one-size-fits-all isn’t an option. Broadly speaking, there are two types of AED pads: Adult and pediatric. Consider the population you’re most likely to use your AED on and purchase your equipment accordingly. If, for example, your AED is placed on a shop floor or in a retirement community, it’s unlikely you’ll need pediatric pads! If your AED is going to be placed in a school setting, however, you may want to consider a school AED package that includes both adult and pediatric pads.

3) Batteries

Pretty much every AED manufacturer has a unique battery that’s patented for the exclusive use in their machines. Although most AED batteries are non-rechargeable, devices with rechargeable batteries are also available. Some AEDs, like the Zoll AED Plus, even use standard consumer 123 lithium batteries!

Once again, how you plan on using your device should determine whether you select a unit with a rechargeable battery or one with a non-rechargeable battery. Bottom line: If you’re a professional who regularly uses an AED, a rechargeable battery may be right for you. CPR and AED instructors may also benefit from rechargeable training units such as the Defibtech Lifeline AED Trainer. However, If your AED is rarely used, a low-maintenance non-rechargeable battery (with a longer lifespan) may be the best bet.

Remember, a well-charged and up-to-date AED battery is essential to the proper functioning of your device! If you are purchasing an AED for your home or office, we highlyrecommend that you to invest in an AED Compliance Management Program.

4) IP Rating

Every AED has an IP code. This “International Protection Rating” or “Ingress Protection Rating” is a code which classifies the level of protection an electrical device (like an AED) provides against liquid and dust. If you’re shopping for a poolside AED, look for a high IP rating and consider a waterproof Pelican Case.

5) Size

If you’re planning on mounting your AED cabinet to the wall and forgetting about it until your compliance management program sends you a maintenance reminder, then size doesn’t matter. However, if your AED follows you wherever your team travels, then you’ll want to find a light and compact unit, like the Philips HeartStart OnSite AED.

For more information about purchasing a new or recertified AED or to schedule a free consultation, visit AED.com or call Cardio Partners at 866-349-4362. You can also email us at customerservice@cardiopartners.com.

The History of CPR and How it Works

Modern Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation Isn’t All That Modern

Photo Credit: Safar Center for Resuscitation Research

Fun Fact: mouth-to-mouth resuscitation is three centuries old! Who knew? Before we dive into the fascinating history of CPR, however, we’re going to take a moment or two to talk about cardiac arrest, how CPR works, Who knew? Before we dive into the fascinating history of CPR, however, we’re going to take a moment or two to talk about cardiac arrest, how CPR works, and how something that was first analyzed in a medical publication in 1792 has evolved into modern-day CPR.

A Few Words about Sudden Cardiac Arrest

Sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) can happen at any time. In many cases, victims may appear perfectly healthy and may not have any known pre-existing heart conditions. AED and CPR advocate Rob Seymour, who we profiled in March, is a perfect example!

Unlike a heart attack, which is caused by a blockage in an artery or vein, SCA occurs when the electrical system of the heart stops functioning. While heart attacks are often preceded by some pretty clear symptoms, SCA rarely is. If you’d like to learn more about the difference between a heart attack and SCA and their symptoms, you’re in luck — we covered that topic back in March!

According to the American Heart Association, approximately 350,000 people suffered cardiac arrest outside of a hospital in 2016. An additional 209,000 cardiac arrests occurred in a hospital setting.

People who experience cardiac arrest outside of a hospital have about a 12% chance of survival. While that’s a pretty dismal statistic, the good news is that the survival rate has been increasing over the past several years. Furthermore, the chances of survival are doubled or even tripled if the victim receives CPR from a bystander—even one with no prior medical training! If that’s not enough, check out our post, 10 Reasons to Learn CPR.

The key to survival for victims of cardiac arrest is often receiving CPR immediately.

How CPR Works

CPR, or cardiopulmonary resuscitation, is an easy-to-learn first aid technique that can keep the victims of a sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) or other medical emergency alive until medical professionals can take over. Chest compressions and rescue breathing work together to keep oxygen flowing in and out of the lungs and to maintain the flow of oxygenated blood throughout the entire body.

When rescue breaths are used, the rescuer’s exhaled breath provides the victim with additional oxygen. Although we exhale carbon dioxide, there’s enough oxygen in every exhaled breath (approximately 16%) to help an SCA victim (University of Washington).

The History of CPR

1700s

In 1740, The Paris Academy of Sciences officially recommends mouth-to-mouth resuscitation for drowning victims. And 17 years later, The Society for the Recovery of Drowned Persons becomes the first organized effort to deal with sudden and unexpected death.

Dr. James Curry publishes “Popular Observations on Apparent Death from Drowning, Suffocation, Etc., with an Account of the Means to be Employed for Recovery” in 1792.

1800s

In 1892 German doctor Friedrich Maass publishes “Resuscitation Technique Following Cardiac Death after Inhalation of Chloroform” in the Berlin Clinical Weekly.

1900s

At the turn of the century, an American surgeon, Dr. George Crile, reports the first successful use of external chest compressions in human resuscitation.

In 1954 Dr. James Elam is the first to prove that expired air was sufficient to maintain adequate oxygenation. Two years later, Elam and Dr. Peter Safar are able to prove the efficacy of CPR and mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.

1960s

The American Heart Association starts a program to acquaint physicians with closed-chest cardiac resuscitation. This program becomes the forerunner of CPR training for the general public.

Cardiologist Leonard Scherlis starts the American Heart Association’s CPR Committee in 1963, and later that same year, the American Heart Association formally endorses CPR.

1970s

In 1972, Leonard Cobb holds the world’s first mass citizen training in CPR in Seattle, Washington called Medic 2. He helps train over 100,000 people during the first two years of the program.

1980s

Now considered common practice by 911 operators, a program to provide telephone instructions for CPR begins in King County, Washington.

1990s

Early Public Access Defibrillation (PAD) programs are developed to provide training and resources to the public to improve bystander assistance rates and to increase the successful resuscitation of cardiac arrest victims.

2000s

The American Heart Association (AHA) and International Liaison Committee on Resuscitation (ILCOR) releases a statement regarding the use of AEDs on children. It is determined that an AED may be used for children one to eight years of age who have no signs of circulation.

In 2008, the AHA releases a statement about Hands-Only™ CPR, saying that bystanders who witness the sudden collapse of an adult should dial 911 and provide high-quality chest compressions by pushing hard and fast in the middle of the victim’s chest.

SOURCES: American Heart Association, Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine, European Resuscitation Journal

For the full scoop on CPR or AEDs, CPR and AED Training, or to purchase an AED, visit AED.com or call Cardio Partners at 866-349-4362. You can also email us at customerservice@cardiopartners.com.

How to Choose the Best CPR Manikin for Your Organization

What You Need to Know about Feedback Requirements for CPR Manikins and More!

There are plenty of CPR training manikins on the market, but not all dummies are created equal. Know what to look for when choosing a CPR manikin, so you can find the one that’s right for your training program.

New Requirements For American Heart Association CPR Classes

As of January 31, The American Heart Association (AHA) will require the use of an instrumented directive feedback device in all courses that teach adult CPR skills. These devices help ensure your students are compressing deep and fast enough for effective CPR.

If your mankins are looking a little worse for wear and you are considering replacements, be sure to invest in high-quality training manikins with real-time audiovisual and corrective evaluation instruction on chest compression rate, depth, chest recoil, and proper hand placement during CPR training.

“Specific and targeted feedback is critical to students understanding and delivering high-quality CPR when faced with a cardiac emergency. Incorporating feedback devices into adult CPR courses improves the quality and consistency of CPR training, which increases the chance of a successful outcome when CPR is performed,” noted AHA volunteer and professor, Mary Elizabeth Mancini, Ph.D., MSN.

Using American Heart Association-approved CPR dummies with feedback improves training quality and provides consistency

“When CPR is taught and performed according to the American Heart Association’s CPR and ECC Guidelines, chest compressions are delivered at a rate of 100 to 120 compressions per minute and a depth of at least two inches. To comply with the new course requirement, feedback devices must, at a minimum, measure and provide real-time audio and/or visual feedback on compression rate and depth, allowing students to self-correct or validate their skill performance immediately during training” (AHA).

As a CPR instructor, you undoubtedly keep an eye on your students’ form; however, you also know that it can be tough to watch every student simultaneously! (Don’t forget to share our CPR Playlist with your students!) Manikins with built-in immediate feedback improves training and makes for a better lifesaver.

Other Considerations for Choosing a CPR Manikin

Are You Traveling to Your Instructional Sites?

If you do a lot of on-site CPR training that requires traveling to different locations, you should consider a smaller, lightweight manikin. Look for a device that’s easy to carry, easy to set up, and easy to clean!

On the other hand, if your trainings are held at outdoor worksites or on rough concrete floors, you may want to prioritize durability over portability.  The Prestan Professional Adult Jaw Thrust Training Manikin, for example, is durable, reliable and well-loved by CPR instructors!

“The Prestan manikin has a unique light-up system under the chest skin near the shoulder. A series of small indicator lights will let you know if the student is pumping at the correct rate. When the student has two green lights, he or she is right on target at 100 beats per minute. When testing the Prestan, we found the lights to be very helpful, accurate, and easy to see” (Occupational Health and Safety).

Which CPR Manikin Features Are Most Important?

  • Feedback: With new CPR requirements on the horizon, make sure your new manikin has a directive feedback device!
  • AED-trainer compatibility: While you’re at it, you may also want to make sure that it’s AED-trainer compatible.
  • Latex-free: As many people are allergic to latex, make sure your manikin is latex-free! (Both Laerdal and Prestan CPR dummies are latex-free).
  • Heimlich compatibility: If you’re also teaching first aid, make sure that your students will be able to practice abdominal thrusts on the manikin.
  • Skin tone: both Laerdal and Prestan offer skin tone choices.
  • Lung Systems: Lung systems vary depending on the brand of manikin you select. Some feature reusable lungs with washable mouth/nose pieces and some are disposable.

Need some additional help deciding which CPR training manikin is right for you? We’d love to offer our assistance. Call Cardio Partners at 866-349-4362. You can also email us at customerservice@cardiopartners.com.

(Almost) Everything You Need to Know About CPR and AEDs

What is CPR? What Are AEDs? We Have the Answers!

Coming off the heels of a heart-pounding CPR and AED Awareness week, we realized that although we had a great time with our CPR Songs: Greatest Hits to Save Lives, it might be wise to share some general information about CPR and AEDs.

Because it’s impossible to teach you everything you need to know about CPR and AEDs in the space of a blog, we’re happy to share the top 10 things you need to know about the life-saving procedure and device. For everything you need to know, sign up for a CPR and AED training class today!

5 Things You Need to Know About CPR:

What is CPR?

CPR, or cardiopulmonary resuscitation, is an easy-to-learn first aid technique that can keep the victims of a sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) or other medical emergency alive until medical professionals can take over.

What Does CPR Do?

CPR keeps blood pumping through the body, which helps maintain vital organ function. CPR has two primary goals: to keep oxygen flowing in and out of the lungs and to keep oxygenated blood flowing throughout the entire body.

Anyone Can Learn CPR

Although real-life doctors (and the actors who just play them on TV) perform CPR professionally, CPR training is easy and anyone can do it. With more than 350,000 cardiac arrests occurring each and every year, amateurs are welcome!

In many instances, “blended” courses allow busy folks to complete the text-based portion of the course online at their own pace and convenience. Once you’ve passed the online course, a focused 3-4 hour hands-on skills workshop rounds out the training. Wondering what you’ll learn in a CPR or First Aid class? Read our post on the subject!

CPR Can Be Tiring

Performing CPR can be physically demanding. High-performing CPR requires 100-120 deep and steady compressions per minute, so head to the gym and start working on your upper body strength and cardio! Take AED.com CPR playlist with you, while you’re at it! Should you be called upon to perform CPR in an emergency, you may find yourself getting tired, so if possible switch off with another person every couple of minutes.

Hands-Only CPR is Effective

Hands-only CPR (also known as compression-only CPR) is CPR without rescue breaths. The American Heart Association has noted that “Hands-only CPR carried out by a bystander has been shown to be as effective as CPR with breaths in the first few minutes during an out-of-hospital sudden cardiac arrest for an adult victim.”

5 Things You Need to Know About AEDs:

What is an AED?

An automated external defibrillator (AED) is a small, portable medical device. When its pads are attached to a person’s chest, the AED can analyze an individual’s heart rhythm and deliver a shock, if necessary, to restart his or her heart. Bystanders, as well as medical professionals, can use AEDs.

How Does an AED Work?

The device works by measuring an unresponsive person’s heart rhythm and delivering a shock to restart the heart or to shock the heart back into the correct rhythm. After analyzing the heart rhythm, automated voice instructions and text prompts tell the rescuer how to proceed. If defibrillation is necessary, the device will warn responders to stay clear of the victim while the shock is delivered. If CPR is indicated, the AED will instruct the rescuer to continue performing CPR.

When Do I Use an AED?

Sudden cardiac arrest can occur anytime, anywhere, and without warning. Call 911 and get the AED if someone becomes suddenly unresponsive, stops breathing, or does not respond when you tap or shake the shoulder firmly and ask, “Are you OK?”

Where Can I Find an AED?

Although laws for the placement of AEDs vary, many states require AEDs in public areas like gyms, schools, sports stadiums, and community centers. AEDs should be kept in a well-marked and publicly accessible location. If you don’t know where your office or workplace keeps the AED, find out! You never know when you might be called upon to use it.

If AEDs Are So Easy To Use, Why Do I Need Training?

Not only will training teach you how to respond quickly in the event of a cardiac emergency, but you’ll also learn how to activate the EMS system and act with confidence. Training also provides hands-on familiarity with an AED and teaches you how to avoid potentially dangerous situations.

For the full scoop on purchasing an AED, CPR and AED Training, and AED Compliance Management, download our free AED Starters Guide. Have questions? We’d love to chat! Call Cardio Partners at 866-349-4362. You can also email us at customerservice@cardiopartners.com.

CPR Songs: Greatest Hits to Save Lives

Cardio Partners Salutes CPR and AED Awareness Week With CPR Playlist

Happy CPR and AED Awareness week! Here at Cardio Partners, we’re supporting and promoting this important week with a curated Spotify playlist just for you! All of the songs on our Greatest Hits to Save Lives have a lifesaving tempo of 100 to 120 beats per minute, which is perfect for performing chest compressions during CPR. From Queen Bey to Queen, our playlist has a little something for everyone.

5 Fast Facts About Sudden Cardiac Arrest and CPR

Before we dive into some fun musical trivia, here are a few facts about sudden cardiac arrest (SCA).

Fact 1: You Nearly Gave Me a Heart Attack Isn’t Accurate

Did you know that cardiac arrest and heart attacks aren’t the same thing? SCA occurs when an electrical malfunction in the heart causes an arrhythmia (abnormal heartbeat) and disrupts the flow of blood to the brain and other vital organs. A heart attack occurs when a blockage in an artery prevents the flow of blood to your heart.

So the next time your troublemaking teen sneaks up on you and scares you half to death, instead of “You nearly gave me a heart attack!” try out “I nearly had a cardiac arrest, kid!”

Fact 2: It Takes Less Than a Minute to Learn How to Save a Life

While it takes more than a decade to become a doctor, did you know that compression-only or hands-only CPR takes just a minute to learn and just may save someone’s life? Check out NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital’s simple 30-second, three-step video:

  • Step 1: Check the Victim

Check to see if the victim is responsive but tapping firming on his shoulders and checking for signs of breathing. If you don’t see any indications of life, get moving!

  • Step 2: Call 911

Call 911 immediately.

  • Step 3: Compress

Begin chest compressions. Interlock your fingers and use the heel of your palm to press down on the center of the center of the chest at a rate of two compressions per second.

Fact 3: Sudden Cardiac Arrest is a Leading Cause of Death

Unless you live in Montana, the odds of getting hit by lightning are just about one in a million. Between 2001 and 2010, an average of 280 lightning deaths and injuries were reported each year. Yet the moment we see a flash of lightning we know what to do: we wisely run for cover!

In stark contrast, there are more than 350,000 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests each year and 90% of these are fatal. Only 46% of the people who suffer an out-of-hospital SCA receive the immediate help they need before EMS teams arrive on the scene. Would you know what to do? If not, learn CPR!

Fact 4: You Can Change the Statistics

While it’s demoralizing to learn that 90% of the people who suffer from an SCA die and 70% of out-of-hospital cardiac arrests occur in the home, it doesn’t help anyone to be fatalistic about it. Change the statistics! Learn CPR.

According to the American Heart Association, CPR (especially if performed immediately) can double or even triple a person’s chance for survival.

Fact 5: Our “Greatest Hits to Save Lives” Playlist is Great for the Gym

Look, we really, really hope that you’re not the kind of person who’s going to cue up our playlist before starting CPR on someone. That would be bad. So plug those earbuds in, start your warmup, and get your Body Movin’.

A Few Fun Facts About Our CPR Playlist

Fact 1: “Cecilia,” By Simon and Garfunkel, Was Banned in Malawi

Apparently, the Malawi Censorship Board wasn’t too pleased the song’s titular heroine, whose name was the same as President Banda’s “Official Hostess” (FileRoom).

Fact 2: “Girls Just Wanna’ Have Fun” Was First Recorded by a Man

Believe it or not, Cyndi Lauper’s 1983 breakthrough hit was written and first recorded by Robert Hazard in 1979 (Wikipedia).

Fact 3: “Crazy in Love” is Bey and Jay’s Only Chart-Topping Collaboration

While they may seemingly rule the universe, “Crazy in Love” is the power couple’s only #1 hit single (Forbes).

8 Pool Safety Tips and AED Best Practices for a Safe, Happy, and Healthy Summer!

Why is Pool Safety Important?

As visions of summer vacation dance in the minds of kids, parents, and teachers, it’s time to either start preparing your backyard pool for the flocks of neighborhood children or to renew that expired pool membership!

Before you take that first plunge into the deep end, however, it’s important to take a moment to reflect on the importance of pool safety. According to the Centers for Disease Control, “Drownings are a leading cause of injury death for young children ages 1 to 14, and three children die every day as a result of drowning. In fact, drowning kills more children 1 to 4 than anything else except birth defects.”

In a ten-year period from 2005-2014, there were an average of 3,536 drowning deaths in the United States each year. That’s more than 10 deaths per day!

Here at Cardio Partners and AED.com, we want to make sure that everyone stays safe this glorious summer!

Tip #1: Make Sure Your Poolside Guests Know How to Swim!

May is National Water Safety Month and we think it’s the perfect time to enroll your child in swim lessons. Here’s a statistic we can get behind: the CDC estimates that the risk of drowning is decreased by nearly 90% when young children take swimming lessons. Naturally, grown-ups and teens can benefit from refresher courses, First Aid classes, CPR certification, or lifeguarding classes. Check out your local Parks & Recreation schedule or try a nearby YMCA or Red Cross.

Tip #2: Invest in Personal Flotation Devices and Life Saving Equipment

If you have a pool, you need personal flotation devices and life-saving equipment. We recommend that all non-swimmers wear a U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jacket or personal flotation device—even in the shallow end! We agree, those little donut-shaped swimmies and dinosaur floaties are super cute and noodles are tons of fun, but they’re not designed to prevent drowning.

Tip #3: Know the Signs of Drowning and Secondary Drowning

Contrary to every splashy Hollywood movie ever released, a person who is drowning probably won’t wave their hands in the air and cry desperately for help. They’ll be too busy trying to breathe to use that precious oxygen for shouting. More often than not, death by drowning is silent, so keep your eyes and your ears open.

Drowning Warning Signs

If your guest has gone silent and still in the water, check in and ask them to respond verbally. If the person is unable to respond, or their expression is blank, get them out of the water immediately!

Symptoms of Dry (or Secondary) Drowning

Dry drowning, or secondary drowning is also a very real danger. The American Osteopathic Association writes: “Dry and secondary drowning can occur after inhaling water through the nose or mouth. In cases of dry drowning, the water triggers a spasm in the airway, causing it to close up and impact breathing. Unlike dry drowning, delayed or secondary drowning occurs when swimmers have taken water into their lungs. The water builds up over time, eventually causing breathing difficulties.”

Tip # 4: Designate a “Lifeguard”

If you’re hosting a pool party, hiring a lifeguard may seem equal parts excessive and over-cautious, but it may be worth considering. First Aid and poolside CPR-certified lifeguards typically earn $10-15 an hour and are worth every penny in peace of mind. For smaller, family affairs, be sure to select a strong swimmer who is also CPR or First Aid certified as your designated watcher.

Tip #5: Invest in a First Aid Kit and an AED

There’s a reason why so many states have passed AED Legislation mandating the placement of AEDs in schools and sporting facilities. For a victim of Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA), an AED can be a lifesaver. AEDs are designed for use in a variety of adverse conditions.

If you need to use an AED on someone who has been swimming or has recently been pulled from the pool, remove any clothing and dry his or her chest as thoroughly as possible. Be sure there are no puddles around you, the patient, or the AED. Apply the pads and follow the device’s voice prompts. Every AED cautions responders and bystanders to stand clear of the patient.

Tip # 6: Pick a Swim Buddy!

Younger kids should have always have a swim buddy! Make sure your young swimmers can identify their swimming buddy and encourage clear communication. Even with the buddy system in place, never leave children unattended in the pool.

Tip # 7: Safety First!

You should check your local ordinances to make sure that your pool enclosure is in compliance with local regulations. Always securely lock your pool area when you’re not using it. And finally, make sure that you have access to a phone (preferably a water-resistant one) at all times in the case of an emergency.

Tip #8: Jump On In! (Feet-first, of Course!)

Diving headfirst into swimming pool can result in serious injury or death. Teach children how to jump into a pool feet-first and away from the pool’s concrete edge. Cannonballs are encouraged!

Get yourself pool-ready and water-safe. Enroll in a First Aid and AED Certification course today. Call our team at 866-349-4362 or visit AED.com or CardioPartners.com for more information.

What You Need to Know to Stop the Bleed and Save a Life

Brentwood Fire and Rescue Department Leads Stop the Bleed Training at Cardio Partners

On Wednesday, Lt. Mike McCutcheon and Engineer Scott Barnes of the Brentwood Fire and Rescue Department led the Cardio Partners team in a hands-on Stop the Bleed training at the company’s Nashville headquarters. The highly experienced emergency medical first responders helped staff members better understand the contents of the company’s popular  Stop the Bleed kits and how to use them efficiently and effectively.

 

What is Stop the Bleed?

“Started in October of 2015 by the White House, Stop the Bleed is a national awareness campaign and a call to action. Stop the Bleed is intended to cultivate grassroots efforts that encourage bystanders to become trained, equipped, and empowered to help in a bleeding emergency before professional help arrives” (Department of Homeland Security).

“If you don’t know how to use this,” cautioned Lt. McCutcheon, holding a tourniquet in his hands, “they will die right in front of you.”

Still reeling from a recent shooting at a nearby Antioch Waffle House and from the tragic Parkland and Las Vegas shootings, where bystanders jumped in and saved lives, participants took his somber warning to heart.

“For me, this was about outfitting myself with the skills to best help my neighbor/family member or anyone in the event of an emergency” – Sean Stargel, Cardio Account Specialist

A person who is bleeding severely can die from loss of blood in less than five minutes. As bystanders are typically the first on the scene in the event of a mass shooting, injury, or accident, first aid certification and Stop the Bleed training sessions are increasingly important. With the right training, anyone can help stabilize a victim and improve their chances of survival.

The training, despite its grim subject matter and sobering opening line, managed to strike a lighthearted tone and packed in a great deal of vital information. Covering basic bleed control techniques such as direct pressure, wound packing, compression, femoral pressure points, and tourniquet application, the course was comprehensive and confidence-inspiring.

If you’re interested in learning more about Preparing Your Community to “Stop the Bleed,” Cardio Partners’ sister company, Bound Tree Medical, held a webinar on the topic in February. The webinar is available for on-demand viewing.

What’s Included in a Stop The Bleed Kit?

Curaplex Stop the Bleed kits are designed to provide the user with immediate access to life-saving products that can control bleeding and traumatic hemorrhaging. These vacuum-packed and tamper-proof kits include:

  • A permanent marker
  • 2 pairs of gloves, latex-free, large
  • 1 C-A-T® tourniquet
  • 1 emergency bandage
  • Pair of trauma shears, 7.5”
  • 2 rolls of primed, compressed gauze dressing
  • A printed insert which shows instructions for use

Advanced kits include 1 Pack of HALO seals and QuikClot combat gauze.

How Can You Save a Life and Stop the Bleed?

Remain calm and rely on your training in the event of an emergency. Before you do anything, take stock of the situation and make sure you’re safe and out of the line of fire. If necessary, move yourself and the injured person to safety. Once you’ve done this, and it’s safe to do so, call 911 and then offer assistance to the victim or victims.

“Remember, it’s their emergency, not yours,” said McCutcheon. “If they’re still conscious, the likelihood of survival is good.”

The Office of Homeland Security has provided a series of simple instructions to help bystanders respond quickly and appropriately in the event of moderate to severe bleeding. These simple steps can help stabilize victims until professional medical assistance arrives.

Venous bleeding is often characterized by blood that trickles or oozes from the site of the wound. Most often these types of injuries can be treated with pressure, compression bandages, or QuikClot Gauze. If the victim is conscious and alert, have them help themselves by elevating and applying pressure while you assess the situation and, if possible, put on gloves.

McCutcheon and Scott reiterated the importance of first assessing the situation for personal safety, then applying pressure, and if the bleeding does not stop, placing a tourniquet “high and tight” on the affected limb. You’ll know you’ve successfully applied the tourniquet when there’s no pulse and the bleeding has stopped. It’s worth noting that a correctly applied tourniquet is extremely painful. If you’re able, label the tourniquet with the time it was applied. This allows emergency personnel to provide the best care possible.

The firefighters also covered basic triage techniques, how to correctly apply HALO seals to sucking chest wounds, and how to stanch bleeding from junctional wounds (such as those located in the neck, armpit, or groin).

Time to enroll in a first aid course? Interested in learning more about our emergency first aid kits our a Curaplex Stop the Bleed kit? Call our team at 866-349-4362 or visit AED.com or CardioPartners.com for more information.