I saw a strange television advertisement the other day for HandsOnlyCPR.org and I was surprised to learn the American Heart Association is now suggesting you can do CPR — Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation — without the Pulmonary!
I was always trained and taught that proper CPR meant chest compressions AND breathing into the victim’s mouth — but that no longer seems to be the case — according to HandsOnlyCPR.org.
There’s even an iPhone App you can download to show you the new CPR Steps.
First: Use your fingers to dial 911.
Finally: Push on the chest a few times.
I can’t help but think this total rewriting of CPR is an effort to get more people interested in performing CPR since nobody really wants to touch mouths with a dying victim and so, it seems, the AHA degraded the overall CPR effort to make it “less icky” and more fashionable, while still calling it “CPR.”
Just use your phone to dial 911, then start pushing with your hands: No breath exchange necessary.
The AHA even created a too-cute “Hands Symphony” on their website to show you just how fun using your hands — instead of your mouth — can be in saving a life:
We live in dangerous times where fluids exchanges can kill you and Herpes infections come gifted in the quick kiss — so I understand the AHA logic of removing the spit exchange barrier from the CPR routine.
I’m still disappointed that CPR as we have known it is now pretty much dead — replaced by flying fingers and only chest compressions — but I suppose we must hold blind faith in our Public Health experts who are paid to know more than the rest of us, and they certainly must have determined that what was once the “breath of life” is now the “kiss of death.”