“Stayin’ Alive” Keeps the Beat for CPR on Grey’s Anatomy

Greys Anatomy

SPOILER ALERT: In a recent tense episode of Grey’s Anatomy, an earthquake shakes Seattle and the hospital receives a call from an 11-year-old girl named Ruby whose mom is hurt—and who can’t get ahold of 911 because the line is busy from the quake. Because she’s on a cell phone in a remote cabin outside the city, they’re having trouble tracking where she is, which leaves Amelia, Owen, and Webber to instruct the young girl how to perform CPR through the phone.

When Ruby’s mom’s lips begin turning blue, Owen goes into emergency medic mode: “I’m going to teach you how to do CPR,” he says. So he does—and makes his fellow doctors join him in an impromptu performance of the Bee Gees’ “Stayin’ Alive” so Ruby can have a beat to perform CPR to. While they’re adorably singing, Kepner breaks in to say they’ve found Ruby’s location and a helicopter’s on its way. Then, Ruby’s cell phone dies—leaving the doctors restlessly awaiting the phone call that the helicopter’s arrived.

After the helicopter arrives at the hospital, Ruby’s mom is taken into surgery. Ruby jumps off the helicopter crying and runs to Owen. “My phone died but I did it. I kept singing just like you said to do!”

If you are ever in a situation where a teenager or an adult is not breathing, the best course of action (after calling 911) is to perform CPR. Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation involves compressing the chest with both hands (interlacing fingers one of top of the other) in the center of the breast bone, hard and fast. Current CPR guidelines recommend compressing the chest at least 2 inches, which is quite deep, to properly circulate oxygen in the bloodstream to the rest of the body. To keep up the quick pace, hum “Stayin’ Alive” to pace compressions at least 100 times per minute. CPR should be performed as long as needed—until the victim either is revived or emergency services arrive to take over.

The full episode of Grey’s Anatomy can be viewed on ABC.

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