15/07/2020
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Home > Health & Wellness > Updates in CPR (Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation) and First Aid

Updates in CPR (Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation) and First Aid

Current information about resuscitation in times of COVID 19 is shared below:

Adult CPR

The procedure for DRABC was always to get down close to the face after checking for Danger and a Response to Look, Listen and Feel for Breathing with your ear up to their mouth and your head facing towards the chest. The European Resuscitation Council is now guiding people who find an unresponsive person to avoid getting close to their face in these uncertain times.

The ERC recommends placing your hand on their stomach or back to feel for breathing, you will continue to count for 10 seconds to see and feel for a rise and fall in breath observing the colour of their face.  If they have not breathed in this period of time and their face looks ashen and lips take on a purple colour commence CPR. “Hands-Only” CPR!

REMEMBER TO CALL EMERGENCY SERVICES and put the phone on speaker beside you.

If there is someone who is present with you at the scene ask them to grab a first aid kit and defibrillator, (if one is present).  If the second person is trained in CPR they can attach Defib pads to the victim, sanitize hands, apply gloves, and take over CPR for you.

It is a good idea to carry hand sanitizer in first aid kits, this way you can wash hands quickly, and apply gloves.

Otherwise, if you are the only one at the scene, continue CPR with bare hands until help arrives. And then immediately wash hands with soap after.

We suggest that you work as a team in giving continuous chest compressions if two or more are present.  Doing a maximum of 4 sets of 30 chest compressions (roughly 2 minutes) of continuous chest compressions per person will greatly enhance the effectiveness, as each person will have a rest between compressions and will be able to carry out the right depth of compressions at a rate of between 100-120 compressions per minute.  Keeping adequate and continuous chest compressions can greatly improve the chance of successful recovery in a person who has suffered cardiac arrest if a defibrillator is present.

Infant/Child Resuscitation & CPR

It is unlikely that paediatric cardiac arrest is caused by heart problems and is more likely due to be a respiratory issue. Providing ventilation (breaths) is pivotable to the child’s chances of survival. Calling an ambulance is of critical importance, so acting swiftly in calling services and commencing CPR is crucial. It is most likely that the child having a cardiac arrest will be known to you, and we understand that giving rescue breaths can increase the risk of transmitting COVID 19 Virus either to you or the child, however the risk is small compared to giving no rescue breaths at all. If no action was to take place, certain cardiac arrest would result and then death of the child.

CPR remains the same 5 rescue breaths first before chest compressions, and then 30 chest compressions to 2 breaths, with continuous cycles of 30 x 2 until help arrives and takes over.

Clare Musk
First Aid Trainer
MSOS and First Aid Mallorca
Information Sourced from the European Resuscitation Council