Until now, the Chain of Survival for sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) has had 5 steps, but now a sixth has been added – recovery. Here’s some insight into the Chain of Survival Steps and what this new step means, from leading suppliers of AEDs in Australia.
The Chain of Survival
- Step One – Call emergency services. The first step is always to call emergency services so that paramedics can arrive on the scene and provide medical assistance as quickly as possible. They can also stay on the phone with you and help you in providing assistance to the victim.
- Step Two – Start CPR. When a person’s heart stops beating, oxygen supply to the brain and organs stops and tissue damage begins. CPR (including bystander CPR) won’t save their life, but it will prolong their life by keeping oxygen flowing to the brain and organs. This gives you more time to treat the person and allows more time for emergency services to arrive.
- Step Three – Early defibrillation with an AED. An AED is a portable, simplified version of the defibrillator used in hospitals, and it’s designed for use by everyday people. Many gyms, public spaces, schools, and businesses have them onsite, as it is the only way to restart a heart in cardiac arrest. Because chances of recovery drop by 10% for every minute that passes, it is essential that bystanders use the AED as quickly as possible.
- Step Four – Treatment by emergency services. The next step is for the victim to receive treatment from emergency responders who are equipped with more specialised equipment, medications, and monitoring devices. This is critical whether or not the victim has responded to treatment with the AED before their arrival.
- Step Five – Treatment in hospital. This is the expert care every SCA patient needs to get the best chance of survival and quality of life outcomes.
Step 6 – Recovery
This step applies to both the victim of the SCA and the bystanders who have assisted them.
In terms of the patient, many people need plenty of care and rehabilitation to manage a wide range of issues, including those that affect their neurological processes, physical abilities, cognitive abilities, emotional and social state. This stage also focuses on introducing long-term treatment that helps to manage risks of future cardiac events and illnesses that may increase risks of SCA.
For bystanders, treating someone in a cardiac emergency is an often traumatic and difficult experience – one that most of us have no experience with. Whether the victim lives or passes away, and whether they are a loved one or a stranger, bystanders need to have the help, support, and professional care needed to process this experience, care for themselves and find closure.
The First Step is Empowering You
Bystanders play the most important role in survival when it comes to out-of-hospital sudden cardiac arrest survival rates and recovery rates. At DefibsPlus, we aim to help provide enough AEDs to ensure that no matter where and when SCA strikes, there is the right equipment on hand to help you save a life. You can help make this happen by investing in an AED for your workplace, home, community, or business – and to help make this more affordable, we’re offering a defibrillator grant.
For more information on our products and services or the DefibsPlus defibrillator grant, please call 1300 463 344 or use our online form to contact us today. Together, we can save lives.