Each year in the United States, an estimated 350,000 people experience sudden cardiac arrest in out-of-hospital environments, most often in homes/residences (70%), public settings (18.8%), and nursing homes (11.2%). Sudden cardiac arrest is the unexpected loss of heart function, breathing and consciousness and commonly the result of an electric disturbance in the heart. Only about 1 in 10 victims survives this dramatic event.
Early access to 911 and early CPR are crucial for surviving cardiac arrest in out-of-hospital environments. However, although 911 is frequently called, in the majority of cases CPR is not performed until the arrival of professional emergency rescuers.
Telecommunicators are the true first responders and can make the difference between life and death. By partnering with the 911 caller, telecommunicators can help to identify the cardiac arrest and provide the caller with high-quality CPR instructions while quickly dispatching emergency medical services. This could double or tripe the chances of survival from sudden cardiac arrest.
The Association Advocates
In Mississippi, the American Heart Association continues to urge the Board on Emergency Telecommunications Standards and Training (BETST) to pass a T-CPR policy requiring all 911 telecommunicators, who provide dispatch for emergency medical conditions, to be trained in the delivery of high-quality telephone CPR. Currently, You're the Cure advocates can help by signing and sharing our petition to BETST. Watch for future You're the Cure alerts on the issue! Not a member of You're the Cure? We invite you to sign up today at www.yourethecure.org/join.
- Watch: Cameron's Story (YouTube)
- Watch: Mary's Story (Facebook.com)
- AHA Advisory, Feb 2020: Telecommunicator CPR can save more lives from out-of-hospital cardiac arrest
- Telecommunicator CPR Stakeholder Information (heart.org)
- Hands-Only CPR (heart.org)
- Heart Attack or Sudden Cardiac Arrest: How Are They Different? (heart.org)
- CPR Facts and Stats (heart.org)
- T-CPR Time Interval Standards (PDF)