FEWER than half of people (47 per cent) in Wales say they would be able to perform CPR if a loved one had a sudden cardiac arrest in front of them, despite the latest data showing that 80 per cent of out-of-hospital cardiac arrests happen in the home.
The figures have been revealed as the British Heart Foundation (BHF) calls on the nation to learn lifesaving CPR during February’s Heart Month, with the message that you’re most likely to need these skills to save someone you know.
There are around 2,800 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests in Wales each year. But only one in 20 people survive, often because those around them don’t have the skills or confidence to perform CPR.
The survey of more than 4,000 adults, which was carried out for the BHF by YouGov, also shows that a third of people in Wales (34 per cent) have never learned CPR. Of those, over half (53 per cent) said it was because they didn’t know where to learn, while nearly a quarter (23 per cent) said they didn’t have the confidence to learn.
The BHF says CPR ‘could be the most important lesson you ever learn’ – with early CPR and defibrillation shown to more than double the chances of surviving a cardiac arrest. Through the charity’s digital CPR training tool, RevivR, it takes just 15 minutes to learn.
The tool means anyone can learn lifesaving CPR skills anywhere, anytime – and all that is needed is a mobile phone and a cushion. RevivR teaches how to recognise a cardiac arrest, gives feedback on chest compressions and outlines the correct steps of using a defibrillator, giving anyone the confidence to help in the ultimate medical emergency.
Rhodri Thomas, Head of Wales at the British Heart Foundation, said: “Every second counts when someone has a cardiac arrest and knowing CPR could be the difference between life and death. A cardiac arrest can happen to anyone at anytime – it could be your partner, child, mum, or dad.
“Our survey shows that too many of us still haven’t learned CPR and wouldn’t be confident to step in if the worst happens. It only takes 15 minutes to learn with RevivR – that’s a coffee break, half time in the football or the time you might spend scrolling through social media. I urge you to do it today, as it could be the most important lesson you have ever learned.”