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How to perform CPR and use an AED in an emergency; find a class in Michigan

Posted at 11:53 AM, Jan 03, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-03 11:53:48-05

(WXYZ) — In the wake of the medical emergency involving Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin, we are making it easier for people to learn how to perform CPR and find a CPR class to become certified.

The 24-year-old suffered a cardiac arrest incident and is in critical condition after collapsing during the Bills' game against the Cincinnati Bengals on Monday night.

Hamlin took a hit to his chest, got up, and then immediately collapsed to the ground. Medical personnel on the scene performed CPR and used an AED – automatic external defibrillator – which is used to help people experiencing sudden cardiac arrest.

The American Red Cross said there are more than 500,000 cardiac arrests each year, and CPR can help save a life if someone stops breathing or their heart stops.

"It's not just for healthcare workers and emergency responders. In fact, CPR can double or triple the chance of survival when bystanders take action," the Red Cross said.

They have training in-person and online, and you can find a class by clicking here

The Red Cross also has a list of steps to perform CPR, however, it is encouraged you take a class to learn more about it.

CPR Steps from the Red Cross

  1. CHECK the scene for safety, form an initial impression and use personal protective equipment (PPE)
  2. If the person appears unresponsive, CHECK for responsiveness, breathing, life-threatening bleeding or other life-threatening conditions using shout-tap-shout
  3. If the person does not respond and is not breathing or only gasping, CALL 9-1-1 and get equipment, or tell someone to do so
  4. Place the person on their back on a firm, flat surface
  5. Give 30 chest compressions
    • Hand position: Two hands centered on the chest
    • Body position: Shoulders directly over hands; elbows locked
    • Depth: At least 2 inches
    • Rate: 100 to 120 per minute
    • Allow chest to return to normal position after each compression
  6. Give 2 breaths
    • Open the airway to a past-neutral position using the head-tilt/chin-lift technique
    • Ensure each breath lasts about 1 second and makes the chest rise; allow air to exit before giving the next breath

    Note: If the 1st breath does not cause the chest to rise, retilt the head and ensure a proper seal before giving the 2nd breath If the 2nd breath does not make the chest rise, an object may be blocking the airway

  7. Continue giving sets of 30 chest compressions and 2 breaths. Use an AED as soon as one is available!

The Red Cross also has steps for using an AED. they should be used when caring for an adult, or a non-breathing child aged 8 or older who weighs 55 pounds or more.

After checking the scene, ask a bystander to call 911, then follow these steps.

  1. As soon as an AED is available, turn it on and follow the voice prompts
  2. Remove clothing and attach pads correctly
    • Remove all clothing covering the chest. If necessary, wipe the chest dry
    • Place one pad on the upper right side of the chest
    • Place the other pad on the lower left side of the chest, a few inches below the left armpit

    Note: If the pads may touch, place one pad in the middle of the chest and the other pad on the back, between the shoulder blades

  3. Plug the pad connector cable into the AED, if necessary
  4. Prepare to let the AED analyze the heart’s rhythm
    • Make sure no one is touching the person
    • Say, “CLEAR!” in a loud, commanding voice
  5. Deliver a shock, if the AED determines one is needed
    • Make sure no one is touching the person
    • Say, “CLEAR!” in a loud, commanding voice
    • Push the “shock” button to deliver the shock
  6. After the AED delivers the shock, or if no shock is advised, immediately start CPR, beginning with compressions