Stony Brook CPR Event Preps People to Save Lives
Nearly 1,000 attend training sessions at LaValle Stadium
Partners took turns delivering chest compressions during the training
Stony Brook, NY – September 8, 2014 – Less than one-third of sudden cardiac arrest victims do not receive pre-hospital CPR, a vital step that can save a life. That startling American Heart Association statistic is one reason Stony Brook Medicine held a hands-only CPR training day at Stony Brook University’s LaValle Stadium on September 7. Nearly 1,000 individuals, from children to seniors, attended to learn CPR.
Assembled long rows around the entire football field were 258 mannequins, devices participants used to learn hands-only CPR. This technique involves pushing hard and fast in rhythmic motion in the center of a victim’s chest. A large video screen on the field provided instruction for those learning the technique.
“The chance of someone’s survival is tripled when hands-only CPR is administered quickly and effectively,” said Edward Stapleton, Associate Professor and Director of Pre-hospital Education, Department of Emergency Medicine in the School of Medicine, and Director of the hands-only CPR event. “Our event has given so many in our community the opportunity to learn this life-saving skill.”
Organized by Stony Brook Medicine, the hands-only CPR training day received support from the Suffolk County Fire, Rescue, and Emergency Services; the Stony Brook Volunteer Ambulance Corp. The Louis J. Acompora Memorial Foundation, and Cardiac Science which provided the mannequins.
“The more people who know how to perform CPR, the safer our communities will become,” said Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone. “My family and I participated in a training session as it was extremely important for us to practice this life-saving skill. I encourage all Suffolk County residents, including children, to learn CPR as it could make the difference between life or death. I also advise our residents to download the county’s Pulse Point mobile application on their smartphones to help improve emergency response times for residents who may experience sudden cardiac arrest.”
James Gaughran, Chair of the Suffolk County Water Authority, also participated in the CPR training. He hopes to work with the county and other organizations to develop a similar program for Water Authority employees.
Tahira Farooque, of Bayport, a home health aide, came to the Stony Brook event to be more prepared for her job in case there is a cardiac arrest.
Most of the participants, including many Stony Brook University students, came simply to learn hands-on CPR in case they are ever in a position to use the skill.
“You should do everything you can to save a life,” said one student Mai Hoang. “CPR buys time and gives an ambulance time to get to the scene.”
Steve Tannenbaum, 61, of Merrick, a lawyer who now travels the country with the Acompora Foundation talking about the importance of on-the-spot CPR, survived a sudden cardiac arrest in 2009. He was playing softball and collapsed on a field. A nurse and a former EMT rushed to his side and performed CPR. Their action proved vital before EMTs arrived and shocked Tannenbaum three times before he was revived. He had two vessel blockages of 95 and 99 percent that required stents.
“CPR saved my life, and still in our country surviving a cardiac arrest can be a matter of luck,” said Tannenbaum.“We want to change that and increase survival rates exponentially. This training at Stony Brook is a big step to doing that for our communities right here on Long Island.”