Learn the life-saving skill of CPR in conjunction with National Heart Month

Learn the life-saving skill of CPR in conjunction with National Heart Month

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – Health officials at Grand Strand Medical Center are hosting a Family & Friends CPR class on Tuesday to encourage more people to learn the life-saving skill as part of National Heart Month.

At the class, certified instructors with the American Hearth Association will be on hand to teach students how to perform CPR on an adult and on a child. Students will also learn the warning signs of heart attacks and strokes. Deborah Kirkman, RN, the director of Cardio Pulmonary Outreach at Grand Strand Medical Center, explained it is critical for adults and kids to recognize when someone needs help. And don't delay, because minutes matter.

Kirkman said there are more than 400,000 incidents of cardiac arrest are reported each year in the United States. "One in four of the sudden cardiac arrests in the United States will have anyone attempt CPR. And the survival rate for these folks is less than 10 percent," she said.

If someone passed out and is suffering from a heart attack or a stroke, the first thing a person must do is call 911.

"Then, you would try to wake the person up by shaking or shouting," explained Kirkman. "And then if you got no response, you put the heel of your hand on the breastbone in the middle of the chest. Put the other hand on top. And then do compressions hard and fast at about 100 beats per minute."

Kirkman recommends singing the song 'Stayin' Alive' by the Bee Gee's in your head to get the right rhythm for compressions.

At the class, students will also learn how to use an AED and how to clear someone's airway if he or she is choking.

You will need to pay $15 for the class, which will cover the cost of the book you will get. The class runs from 3-5 p.m. on Tuesday at GSMC's Health Finder's location in the Coastal Grand Mall. To register, call 843.692.4444 or visit www.GrandStrandMed.com/Events.

Copyright 2016 WMBF News. All rights reserved.