The Notre Dame Fire Department’s medical outreach team would like to call your attention to interim American Heart Association CPR guidelines modified in light of the coronavirus pandemic.
Bystander CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) improves the likelihood of a patient’s survival from cardiac arrest occurring outside a hospital. However, COVID-19 is spread through respiratory droplets when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or talks. If a rescuer breathes into a cardiac arrest patient’s mouth, there will likely be an exchange of respiratory droplets.
Household members who have been exposed to the victim at home should not hesitate to attempt to rescue the cardiac patient.
A non-household bystander who attempts to rescue a cardiac arrest patient should consider wearing a face mask or cloth over his/her mouth and nose and or placing such over the mouth and nose of the victim to reduce the risk of transmission.
In the case of an adult cardiac arrest patient, lay rescuers should perform at least hands-only CPR. For children, lay rescuers should perform chest compressions and consider mouth-to-mouth ventilation, if willing and able, given the higher incidence of respiratory arrest in children.
To perform Hands-Only CPR place your hands in the center of the chest and pump hard and fast at a rate of 100 to 120 compressions per minute.
If an AED (automated external defibrillator) is available, please proceed with opening the AED and following the automated prompts to initiate life saving intervention. Defibrillation is not expected to be a highly aerosolizing procedure.
For more information, refer to the American Heart Association’s interim CPR guidance. For on-campus medical assistance, please call ND Dispatch at 574-631-5555. If you are off campus, please call 911.