Aloha, we've just completed celebrating National CPR Awareness Week (June 1-7, 2016), which is intended to raise awareness about the importance of knowing how to perform CPR.
A cardiac arrest event can happen to anybody anywhere. Family members, friends, coworkers, anyone can be affected. In fact, each year over 350,000 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests occur in the U.S. And 70 percent of cardiac arrests occur in the home, so the chances are, if you are trained, you'll be doing CPR on someone you know or love.
Unfortunately, too many of us are still not trained. The American Heart Association has helped to develop an easier CPR technique known as "hands-only" CPR which requires you only to provide chest compressions, no breathing, in order to save a life. Training for that technique takes no more than 20 minutes.
The Heart Association has also set a goal to have all states enact policy that would insure that every high school student receives CPR training prior to graduating. Thirty-two states have already put that policy in place, but Hawaii is not one of them.
Our State Board of Education would be wise to set a policy that would add CPR to our high school health classes, classes that are already needed for graduation, to insure that over time, the majority of our community members would have the skills to save a life.
Who knows, that life could be yours or mine.