It is crucial for people to understand basic medical knowledge. I am an EMT and I was working this past week with the rest of my crew when we received a call to Longwood University for a student who was having a seizure. When we got on scene, the patient had disappeared. One of the other students has told this young lady that she should just drive herself to the hospital instead of waiting for the rescue squad. Seizures are very dangerous and can re-appear even after the first one subsides. Driving to the hospital is a very bad idea when someone has had a seizure and is alone. This incident just proves that there is a lack in basic medical understanding that could end up causing someone great harm.
This incident has made me want to work harder at getting something implemented where Longwood students receive basic medical training. The problem is that there is nothing currently in place that teaches students how to respond to certain medical emergencies. By implementing a two-hour seminar during New Lancer Days, students will learn how to react in emergencies, and how to provide assistance in the event of a medical emergency. Some people may see this as an unnecessary aspect of New Lancer Days for students, but there is research that shows there is a significant increase in survival rate in the event of a heart attack if CPR is started early. The American Heart Association did a study that investigated the survival rate of people who had heart attacks who had CPR started earlier by bystanders. The research showed that there was a significantly higher survival rate of people who had heart attacks if CPR was started by bystanders right after the incident, instead of waiting for EMS personal to arrive on scene.
Another reason why people can feel like this is not an important thing to be teaching to students is the fact that there is a local rescue squad that is only a few minutes away from campus. The problem with this is that the rescue squad near Longwood deals with all of Prince Edward County. They are not just there for Longwood University. There are only two crews at the squad house at a time and they may be out dealing with another call. If that happens, a ambulance will come from a neighboring county but it will take a long time. By teaching students how to deal with medical emergencies, they will be able provide assistance until the rescue squad can arrive and take over treating the patient.
The logic to this is simple- by teaching students how to help others in a medical emergency, they can end up saving someone life. And it doesn’t have to just be in Prince Edward County. This idea extends to where all Longwood students call home. They become citizen leaders in there own county and can make a difference anywhere they go.
Copley, D. P. , J. A. Mantle, W. J. Rogers, R. O. Russell Jr. , and C. E. Rackley. “Improved
Outcome For Prehospital Cardiopulmonary Collapse With Resuscitation By Bystanders.” Journal of the American College of Emergency Physicians 7.5 (1978): 223-223. Print.
I chose this article as my critical source because it is an example of how important it is for everyone to know CPR. The American Heart Association did a study on the effects of bystander-initiated CPR and if there was an improvement in survival rates. What they discovered is that there is a very significant increase in survival rate if CPR was started sooner, rather than later.