By Kris Leonhardt
GREEN BAY – The Green Bay Packers and Bellin Health teamed up on Wednesday, Aug. 23, to host a walk-in hands-only CPR training event.
“Following the sudden cardiac arrest suffered by Damar Hamlin of the Buffalo Bills earlier this year, the Packers and Bellin Health have taken steps to provide life-saving resources to surrounding communities,” the Packers said in a release.
The team has also worked to distribute automated external defibrillators (AEDs) to 80 organizations in the area and conducted training sessions to equip individuals to respond to sudden cardiac arrests.
“The Damar Hamlin incident kind of opened everyone’s eyes about the importance of CPR. So the more people we can touch and reach out there to be that first step, to try and save someone’s life, the better,” Bellin American Heart Association Training Center Coordinator Denise Ellis stated, during the walk-in session held inside the Johnsonville Tailgate Village at Lambeau Field.
“What we’re really working on [is] how to do compressions most effectively and efficiently because they are hard work. So, if you can have good body mechanics and know the proper depth and at the proper rate, it increases the survival rate.
Ellis explained an effective way a person would respond to an unconscious individual.
“The first thing he’s going to do is see if they’re awake,” Ellis stated, and then make sure a call is placed to 911.
“And then he’s going to go right into compression so his hands are in the middle of the chest. He’s pressing at a rate of 100 to 120 beats per minute, and at a depth of at least two inches.
“With hands-only CPR, he’s going to continue to do compressions without stopping for breathing. There’s enough oxygen in the blood for about six to seven minutes worth of compressions and to still be circulating that oxygenated blood. So the hope is that help arrives within that time.”
Packers President/CEO Mark Murphy said the importance of hosting events like these is to “reinforce the significance of prompt action.
“In a cardiac emergency, even those of us who do not have any advanced medical training or experience can provide initial life-saving efforts until first responders arrive,” he continued.
Ellis added that this type of training “eliminates mouth-to-mouth contact and it just makes it easier for the general public to do something. A lot of people do not want to have mouth-to-mouth contact, which is okay, so if we can do this it is absolutely better doing this than nothing at all.”