Outside of the hospital, 9 out of 10 persons who have cardiac arrest die, but CPR can substantially improve those odds. CPR can increase or treble a person's chances of survival if performed within the initial few minutes following cardiac arrest. CPR does not require any special certification or training, but it does require education. Don't be terrified if someone close to you experiences cardiac arrest; simply be prepared! Take this story as an example of how it is very important to be educated about CPR.
Torrie Norwood, 16, and Azarria Simmons, 17, had just returned home after a regular Saturday night out. Another car plowed into them as they traveled back to their hometown of St. Petersburg, Florida. Torrie opened her eyes after the collision and saw the vehicle had been forced into a tree in the midst of someone's front yard.
Torrie's car door wouldn't open, but her window had been shattered during the collision, so she had a clear path to safety.
They all raced down the street because they feared the car was going to explode, but then she glanced around and didn't see Azarria running with them. She had to dash back to the car to make sure she was still inside, and she was.
Things were not looking well.
She wasn't moving or breathing, so she had to drag her out. There was blood and glass everywhere.
Torrie then went to work, instructing a passer-by to dial 911.
"I had only one thing on my mind." Torrie says, "I began CPR."
Azarria started to come back to life after 30 chest compressions and two rescue breaths. The paramedics arrived at that precise moment, ready to transport Azarria to the nearest hospital.
Torrie recalls, "I simply kept asking them if she was okay."
Fortunately for both girls, their High School offers a Medical program. Torrie had just received her Basic Life Support certification the day before the tragedy, as well as Heartsaver First Aid and Bloodborne Pathogens After CPR.
That's a crucial point to remember. "We don't use a lot of what we learn once we graduate." "However, CPR is a skill that we can utilize for the rest of our lives," Torrie explains.