Survivors of Sudden Cardiac Arrest Are Invited to Nominate Their Rescuers for the Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation’s People Saving People Award

People Saving People Award

Bystander intervention can mean the difference between life and death for victims of sudden cardiac arrest. I should know.

October is National Sudden Cardiac Arrest Awareness Month and cardiac arrest survivors across the country are undoubtedly celebrating the fact that thanks to people who happened to be nearby and took immediate action, they defied the odds and survived sudden cardiac death.

The Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation invites survivors to show their appreciation by nominating their rescuers for the People Saving People(tm) award, which honors ‘ordinary’ people with extraordinary spirits, whose actions made the difference between life and death for victims of sudden cardiac arrest. The purpose of the award is to increase awareness about the critical need for laypersons to be prepared to intervene in sudden cardiac emergencies.

Sudden cardiac arrest affects about 357,000 people outside hospitals each year in the U.S., including 7,000 young people. The life-threatening condition occurs when the heart suddenly stops beating effectively, without warning. The person collapses, becomes unresponsive, no longer breathes normally, and may exhibit gasping or seizure-like movements. It can happen to seemingly healthy children, teens and adults of any age, at any time.

Without immediate care, the person experiencing sudden cardiac arrest will die within minutes. But if he or she receives immediate CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) and treatment with a defibrillator, the chances of survival increase dramatically.

Fortunately, automated external defibrillators (AEDs), designed for use by laypersons, are increasingly available in public places. Unfortunately, however, only a third of SCA…

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