St John Ambulance responds to the change in CPR advice
Following on from the American Heart
Association statement that hands-only CPR may be as good as
traditional CPR in certain situations, the BBC wanted to clarify
the issue in the UK.
St John Ambulance volunteers were invited onto BBC Breakfast to
respond to the statement made by the American Heart Association.
Here St John volunteer, Peter Marchant spoke about how he
saved a gentleman's life using CPR, clearly highlighting how
important the technique can be.
The UK based Resusciation Council was also on hand to advise
people to continue using current protocols as the evidence is not
yet conclusive. Their advice states that rescue breaths should be
given where possible but it is acceptable for people to give only
chest compressions if they are unwilling/unable to give rescue
We urge everyone to learn first aid and have the ability to potentially save a life.
Dr Meng Aw-Yong
Medical Adviser at St John Ambulance
Dr Meng Aw-Yong, Medical Adviser at St John Ambulance,
clarifies, 'So far the Resuscitation Council has said that CPR
using chest compressions only is effective for about five
minutes, while there is still oxygen in the body, but they are
constantly reviewing and updating their guidelines based on
evidence that emerges. In the
case of children or drowning victims, where breathing problems are
the main cause, mouth to mouth resuscitation is still
St John Ambulance has applauded the American
Heart Association research for seeking to provide guidance for
members of the public who are unwilling to give CPR, while
maintaining that more people should learn life-saving skills.
'We know people can be reluctant to give mouth to mouth and so,
based on medical research, in this situation we advise people
performing first aid to do chest compressions because it's
better to do something than nothing. We urge everyone to learn
first aid and have the ability to potentially save a life.'