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Free Hands Only CPR Training Today

By Diane Holm

September 29, 2015

North Fort Myers – In celebration of World Heart Day, Sept. 29, the Florida Department of Health in Lee County is promoting heart health by hosting Hands-Only™ CPR training. World Heart Day is an annual event created by the World Heart Foundation to remind everyone that heart disease and stroke are the world’s leading causes of death. The theme for 2015 is creating heart healthy environments.

“We have first responders Lee County EMS and North Fort Myers Fire District working with us and Lee Memorial Health System on this training because we all share the goal of saving lives from heart attack and stroke,” said Dr. Henry Kurban, interim director of DOH-Lee. “Getting everyone trained to do Hands-Only™ CPR is a big step toward improving survival rates from heart attack and stroke in Lee County.”

Everyone is encouraged to take 30 minutes or more out of their day to drop into the North Fort Myers Conference Room of the Department at 83 Pondella Road for the free training. Doors open at 10 a.m. Hands on instruction will occur every 30 minutes beginning at 10:30 a.m. through 1 p.m.

In Florida, 23.4 percent of adults age 65 and older reported in 2013 that they had been told by a healthcare provider that they had a heart attack, coronary heart disease or stroke. Heart disease was the leading cause of death in Florida in 2014 and is the number one killer of women, taking more lives than all forms of cancer combined.

Hands-Only™ CPR is CPR without mouth-to-mouth breaths. It is recommended for use by people who see a teen or adult suddenly collapse in an “out-of-hospital” setting (such as at home, at work or in a park). It consists of two easy steps:

1. Call 9-1-1 (or send someone to do that); and
2. Push hard and fast in the center of the chest.

Hands-Only™ CPR performed by a bystander has been shown to be as effective as conventional CPR with mouth-to-mouth breaths in the first few minutes of sudden cardiac arrest. Watch these videos for a brief overview of Hands Only™ CPR.

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