An event in Saskatoon’s Kiwanis Park on Sunday aimed to equip people with the skills to perform basic CPR and to use an automated external defibrillator (AED).
Community of Heroes is a training event to give people both the knowledge and confidence to respond to a cardiac emergency.
“An event like this is really important because bystander response to CPR is really low across Canada,” said Lisa Bagan, resuscitation program manager with Heart and Stroke.
Experts from Heart and Stroke and Medavie Health Services were on site to give people of all ages a quick, free introduction.
“I think it’s important. You never know when you are going to need it,” said participant Emanuelle Striemoukhova.
Striemoukhova said she saw the training event online and always wanted to learn CPR.
“I feel a little bit more confident about trying to help someone. I hope I can help someone if it comes to that,” she said.
“There’s 40,000 cardiac arrests that happen in Canada every year. Eighty-five per cent of those happen outside of a medical facility,” Bagan explained explained.
“They’re happening in public places, they’re happening in people’s homes, in parks like we’re at today. It’s really important for bystanders to know what to do, to have the confidence to respond quickly.”
The training included instruction in hands-only CPR, teaching basic chest compressions. Instructors also gave a step-by-step tutorial on how to use an AED.
“There’s over 900 AEDs in Saskatoon alone. They’re in public places and so we want the public to know how to use them,” Bagan said.
Basic CPR and AED skills can double a person’s chance at survival, according to Bagan.
“Any CPR is better than no CPR.”