Community CPR/AED training event will be held Feb. 29
Community leaders and county emergency services officials will hold a free public training session to give members of the community a chance to learn basic life-saving techniques at 6 p.m. Monday, Feb. 29, in the Pineries Room of the Portage County Public Library, downtown Stevens Point.
According to the Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation, EMS responds to more than 320,000 sudden cardiac arrests every year in the United States. Nationwide, however, only about 10 percent survive. Experts agree that many more could survive, if more bystanders would perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and use an automated external defibrillator (AED).
As February is American Heart Month, the city officials of Wausau and Stevens Point challenged each other to improve survival from cardiac arrest in their cities. The challenge calls for training citizens in CPR, placing public access automated external defibrillators (AEDs) and raising funds for local foundations that support cardiac arrest survival.
The fire departments in both cities will lead the efforts, promoting CPR classes and encouraging the purchase and placement of AEDs.
The Central Wisconsin CPR Challenge kicked off Feb. 8 and will continue until March 31.
To help bring awareness to these training opportunities, several community leaders have set up an event to get trained or re-trained in hands-only CPR and proper use of portable AEDs.
Stevens Point Mayor Mike Wiza, Portage County Sheriff Mike Lukas, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point (UWSP) Chancellor Bernie Patterson, UWSP Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs Al Thompson, Whiting Village President Paul Stroik and others will participate in the training.
Wiza said the community administrators will “lead by example” and get trained alongside members of the public at the Monday demonstration.
“This is a great opportunity to not only meet some of your community leaders, but to train with them, side by side, and learn how to save a life,” said Wiza. “I have seen the AED units at a lot of places, but was a little intimidated by them. I’m now confident that anyone would be able to use one and remember, the life you save might be mine.”
The event is free and open to the public of all ages. The session will last about one hour and will be conducted by Stevens Point Fire Department firefighters/paramedics.
For more information about how to save a life, contact the Stevens Point Fire Department at 715-344-1833 or the Wausau Fire Department at 715-261-7900.
For additional information on the event, visit the city of Stevens Point’s website at www.stevenspoint.com or the Stevens Point Fire Department’s Facebook Page.