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A note from our CPR instructor

posted Jul 17, 2012, 4:02 PM by Ethan Shirley   [ updated Jul 18, 2012, 9:38 PM by Julie Bateman ]

CPR Very Basic Lesson

During my time spent at the boarding school of Nazaré, my language abilities, tolerance for sugary juice, and soccer skills were tested.  My greatest test, however, came in the form of an hour-long CPR course. The first thing I realized while designing the curriculum was that nearly all of the material that I wanted teach…had to be cut.  This was partly due to my own language abilities (or limitations) but mostly due to the environment in which the children lived.  Kids living in a rural area have no use for an AED (automated external defibrillator--a standard emergency heart re-starter in the USA), nor did I have one with which I could demonstrate.  Only the most basic ideas were presented to the kids: in the event of an emergency, find an adult; activate the emergency response system; and make your own safety the #1 priority. After teaching proper chest compression and mouth-to-mouth technique, we ended the class on a high note with all of the students performing five continuous cycles of CPR on pillows. In the future, we hope to make these classes longer and part of a more extended curriculum teaching kids about not only emergency medicine, but public health and disease in general. All in all, we felt like the kids learned something and are more prepared than they were before. We hope to extend this knowledge to more kids and adults in the Pantanal and surrounding areas in the future!