A study carried out recently showed that there is a possibility the neighborhood one is in has an effect on whether one will get CPR or not from total strangers within the victim’s vicinity. This is what leads to the question of the likelihood of bystander CPR. Just as the name suggests, this form of CPR is the kind that is administered by someone who is on location and who can attend to the victim, it is interesting to note that victims of heart attack are more likely to get help in a neighborhood that has a high population of black folk and in the low income bracket.
In addition to the neighborhood that one is in, the performance of bystander CPR is also dependent on whether or not there is a willing bystander to carry out the procedure. How they perform is largely dependent on the cascade of events triggered to ensure that the victim survives. For this reason, it is imperative that CPR training is carried out by targeting specific communities in any given locality. The purpose of doing so will be closely tied to meeting the inherent needs of the community that may be largely different from other communities in different neighborhoods. To understand the effect of income and race on the likelihood of bystander CPR, data was collected over a period of time.
This data outlined specific places where the different attacks occurred, the ethnic background of the patient as well as whether the arrest was witnessed by any people around the scene. In addition to this information, the collection of data also included the neurological outcome following provision of bystander CPR (if there was any). Results of the neurological outcome were scaled on 1-5, where one showed that the individual functioned normally while 5 indicated the victim passed away. This study showed that out of all those individuals who experienced cardiac arrest outside of a hospital setting just about 29% of the cases got CPR performed by a bystander.
This data also showed that the probability of getting bystander CPR was exponentially decreased in the following situations:
– Neighborhoods with significantly high numbers of affluent blacks.
– Neighborhoods with significantly high numbers of poor white folk.
– Neighborhoods with both ethnic groups, but which are generally poor.
– Neighborhoods with significantly high numbers of poor blacks.
Other factors that played a key role in the high rates of bystander CPR included cases where someone witnessed the occurrence of the cardiac arrest
NB/ the study was carried out by a team led by Comilla Sasson who, at the time, was the head of Colorado School of Medicine located in Aurora. The data was obtained from an organization known as CARES – Cardiac Arrest Registry to Enhance Survival. This is an organization formed by a partnership between Emory University in Atlanta Georgia and CDC.
The study also highlights key issues that arise, and which could be used to improve the response accorded during bystander CPR.