Taking our Knowledge Home

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 is the logo for the American Heart Association, and their motto is “Learn and Live”. They are the organization who did the research on survival rate in comparison to bystander-iniaitiated CPR.

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.

This map shows all the counties in the state of Virginia. Students from all over Virginia attend Longwood University and they will take their knowledge back to where-ever they call home.

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.


Critical Source:

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.

3 thoughts on “Taking our Knowledge Home

  1. Kathleen,
    This is truly a great idea, and so simple, it’s hard to imagine how you’d encounter resistance with just a 2-hour class. Have you looked into the most recent New Lancer Days schedule? I suppose there could be some resistance with adding an additional day to the already-packed New Lancer Days, but if you could find options to take out of New Lancer Days maybe? From my own experience, I thought several of the seminars were worthless. Like there was one on relationships that basically told us that 80% of those of us dating someone we did in high school were going to break up within the first three months of college…for some reason I think first aid training might be a better seminar.
    I am curious about what specific medical training you’d like to do? Since July of 2013, pre-service teachers are now required to have a course in Emergency First Aid, CPR, and AED for adults and children. If part of your training incorporated that, it would definitely get some support from all education majors, because I know I’m scrambling to find a cheap, accessible class in the time crunch before I student-teach.

    • I haven’t looked into the current New Lancer Day schedule but my plan is to write my professional letter to the head of New Lancer Days to obtain some more information about it. As for the training, the only certification that will come out of it will be CPR/AED training. In order to get the basic first aid certification or more require more time and in-depth training that would be hard to do in a large setting. If it helps, more rescue squads offer some kind of emergency first aid class 🙂

  2. Your post is excellent! Your opening story is completely mind blowing! Why in the world would someone let their friend drive to the hospital after having a seizure. I actually work at a daycare in Powhatan and we had an incident about a year ago where one of our students had a seizure. It was very scary and by no means is anyone capable to drive after having one. I still think your idea is a great one, everyone should have basic knowledge of what to do in a situation like this. After you mentioned that there is only two crews at Prince Edward County ‘s station an idea came to me. In addition to everyone receiving basic medical training what if we had a crew just for Longwood? The crew could consist of students, just like you. Just an idea! 🙂 Great job, you are heading in the right direction!

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