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Saving Lives using CPR & First Aid

You never know when your First Aid or Basic Life support skills could be called upon. Every week I hear stories from friends, colleagues, and patients about how they have had to react in a medical emergency to help someone in need. Learning how to give CPR and use Emergency First Aid is a life skill.

First Aid box

Recently I had the privilege of working with the Swiss Resuscitation Council to translate and record the voiceover for their BLS Quick video.

BLS stands for Basic Life Support and BLS Quick training is aimed at the general public to raise awareness about: 

  • When someone might need Basic Life Support. 
  • How to alert the appropriate emergency services. 
  • How to begin providing CPR and using a defibrillator, under the guidance of the telephone operator.    

The video is well worth a watch. It runs through a scenario where a woman is walking in the forest and comes across a man who has collapsed whilst running.  She shouts for help, hoping that someone nearby hears her. She then checks to see if the man is responsive and breathing. Upon finding that he isn’t, she calls 144 for an ambulance and speaks with the telephone operator (the role that I played).  

Collapse

Once advised about the location, the operator immediately deploys an ambulance. Then, the operator then stays with the woman and with her phone on speaker mode, guides her through resuscitation.  

Chest Compressions

First, she is instructed to roll the man onto his back and expose his chest. Kneeling beside him, she is asked to place both hands in the centre of his chest, to keep her arms outstretched and to push hard and fast down onto his sternum, giving chest compressions. These are given at a rate of 100 per minute without stopping. 

Practice CPR on dummy

After a few minutes, a young man passes by on his bike and stops to see if he can help. The telephone operator says that there is a defibrillator available at the local post office. He quickly cycles off to retrieve it whilst the lady continues CPR.  

Defibrillator

When he returns, the duo are guided through how to use the defibrillator and are then able to follow the instructions as the defibrillator speaks to them and tells them what to do. After a short while, the ambulance arrives, and the crew take over.  

Defibrillator

During the film, we also hear from someone who has had to give Basic Life Support in a real-life situation. She talks about how relieved she was having the support and guidance from the 144 operator.  

We also hear from a paramedic who explains the importance of acting fast to save a life. For every minute without resuscitation, a person’s chance of survival drops by 10%. She discusses the benefits of taking a Swiss Resuscitation Council Basic Life Support course to get hands on practice and give you confidence so that your actions become routine.  

You can watch the video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a_hXA94xLgI

It will take only take six or seven minutes but could make all the difference when it comes to saving a life.  

And you can find CPR and Basic Life Support courses in English across Switzerland here: https://healthfirst.ch/first-aid-courses-switzerland/saving-lives-cpr-and-emergency-first-aid/

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