Black and Hispanic individuals in the United States are far less likely than white people to undergo cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) at home and in public. This discrepancy increases the risk for members of already marginalized populations because almost 1,000 Americans experience cardiac arrest outside of medical institutions every day.
A study was conducted to understand the reason behind this disparity and to better tackle it. The study team examined 110,000 cardiac arrests that occurred outside hospitals but were seen by at least one bystander between 2013 and 2019.
Black and Hispanic people received CPR at 46% in public versus 60% for white people. Black and Hispanic people received CPR at home in 39 percent of cases, against 47 percent of white people.
This inequality exists beyond the confines of one’s neighborhood’s racial makeup or socioeconomic status. The study used the example that a white person experiencing cardiac arrest in a neighborhood where Black and Hispanic residents made up more than 50% of the population was nevertheless more likely to receive CPR than a Black or Hispanic person in that community. The startling results are detailed in a paper presented at the 71st Annual Scientific Session of the American College of Cardiology.
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The team has not yet completed the investigation into the precise causes of these various CPR rates. People’s desire to help a person of color may be influenced by implicit and overt racism. There could be linguistic obstacles and variations in how 911 dispatchers teach onlookers to perform CPR. It is also anticipated that access to CPR instruction will be crucial.
The previous ten years have seen changes in CPR guidelines. While waiting for paramedics, onlookers are instructed to perform 100 to 120 chest compressions per minute without stopping to deliver mouth-to-mouth or check the pulse.
Between 70 and 90 percent of those who experience cardiac arrest pass away before they can be sent to the hospital. The right first aid in these situations could save countless lives. You may read more about CPR and cardiac arrest here.
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