Report: BLS training for Form 2 Students – Kullegg San Nikola Date of training 4th October 2019 Dr Agnes Cachia Pickard
As part of the activities for the ‘Restart a Heart’ Campaign, the Malta Resuscitation Council has taken part in an event held in several schools whereby healthy living and by-stander CPR were promoted under the umbrella of World Heart Day. In total 400 children were trained in various schools. As one of the three instructors on the stand promoting CPR, I feel privileged to have had the opportunity to instruct the new generation in the importance of by-stander CPR. Initially, admittedly, since this was my first experience of instructing teenagers rather than adult health care providers, I was concerned on how enthusiastic non-medical young people would be regarding such a theme. However, as the day kicked off, I realised that these youngsters were not only attentive to what was being shown but were even keen enough to come up with some really interesting questions.
Throughout the day we delivered approximately 15 ten minute sessions, each attended by 10 students. Each session started with a brief introduction on CPR during which the 5 steps of the BLS algorithm were highlighted, namely; the safe approach, check for response, check for breathing, call 112 and finally initiate cardiac compressions. Thereafter, each student had the opportunity to go through each of these five steps. Special attention was given to the delivery of chest compressions. It was impressive how most of the students managed to deliver effective cardiac compressions. But even more satisfying was the fact that the students appreciated that a few minutes of cardiac compressions, given promptly, could have a huge impact on a person’s outcome, particularly since the victim could be one of their loved ones.
I really believe that the new generation is key in improving the outcome for sudden collapse victims in Malta and Gozo. Young people need to be exposed repeatedly to such training sessions to ensure that, if they do happen to witness a cardiac arrest, then providing rapid and effective BLS will be second nature to them.