Employees unprepared for cardiac emergency in workplace

RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - At Orangetheory, members take an hour to work out as hard as they can. You would expect instructors there would be trained in CPR, and you would be right. They also are versed in the AED machine, which delivers a shock to the heart should it stop.

Life-saving training. Photo by Terri Russell/KOLO.

That lifesaving training is part of their certification. But the owner has gone a step further and had her front desk employees get the training as well.

“We found REMSA. Had to hold classes when our employees were available after classes. So they came to us on the weekend. They brought their medically-trained professionals. They came in and trained our staff on what to do,” says Alexis Riggs with Orangetheory.

This training means two to four employees at one time there know how to deliver lifesaving care. But that is not the case at all work places.

According to two commissioned studies by the American Heart Association, most American employees have not received CPR or AED training. That same survey shows managers and employees recognize the value of training but have failed to provide that training.

Alma Marin teaches such classes for REMSA. While she says she keeps busy teaching those classes to local businesses, it could still just be the tip of the iceberg.

“Less than 46% of people in the community get CPR or AED. And if you implement the AED there is an increase chance of survival by 60%,” says Marin.

The AHA study says its study shows a false sense of security when it comes to CPR or AEDS--that someone else at the workplace knows the location and how to use the AED or how to perform CPR in an event of an emergency.

There were some encouraging results in the study. 90% of employees believe CPR and AED training is important and 70% say they would take classes on their own time.