Heart Smart Proactive firm provides defibrillator, CPR training

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By Christine L. Mobley
Legal News

From a tale of an evaded tragedy, one law firm equips itself with the necessary tools and education that could one day save a life.

A distraught Mary Ann Dunham, office administrator at Bush, Seyferth & Paige (BSP), relayed the story of her brother-in-law to BSP managing partner Cheryl Bush back in January.

On January 9, John Bruder, 52, a relatively healthy man was playing hockey at Suburban Ice Rink in Farmington Hills when the unthinkable happened. He dropped. Bruder had gone into what is referred to as “sudden cardiac death.” Thankfully, he survived due to the rapid response of his fellow hockey players, including a physician friend, who immediately initiated CPR, and ultimately administered defibrillation with the AED – or automated external defibrillator – the rink had on site.

Bush recalls how she felt upon initially hearing the tale.

“My first reaction was horror,” Bush recalled. “Then there was guilt because I had asked someone two years ago at the firm to take charge of getting a defibrillator but we didn’t follow through. I felt guilty that we had been exposed for that long.”

In a little more than a month’s time, BSP had an AED and was being provided with necessary training on how to administer it and CPR.

The training was parlayed into the first BSP Be Heart Smart and took place last month at BSP’s offices located in Troy. Coinciding with National Heart Month, firm employees wore red to the training and made donations to the American Heart Association.

Tim O’Connor of Heartbeat LLC provided the CPR/AED training for the firm, which was included in the AED purchase price. He will also come back to BSP to provide First Aid in the Workplace training.

“I like it when companies are proactive versus reactive,” O’Connor said.

“You didn’t wait for something to happen. I hope you never have to use this.

“I hope that it never gets to that point, but if it does then you have an instrument in order to save someone.

“Statistically, you only have 3 to 5 minutes to save someone’s life once they go into cardiac arrest.”

The form of CPR that was the crux of the training is what is known as Continuous Chest Compression CPR, which is CPR minus the mouth-to-mouth ventilation. Continuous Chest Compression CPR has actually been proven to be more effective than traditional CPR.
At the conclusion of the CPR training, BSP employees knew how to:

• List the major risk factors of heart disease and discuss prudent heart living.

• State the warning signs of a heart attack.

• Explain how to activate the EMS system.

• Demonstrate the following skills on a mannequin: recovery position, rescue breathing, one-rescuer CPR, and foreign-body airway obstruction management for the adult victim.

BSP employees were also taught when to properly use an automatic external defibrillator when a person is in cardiac arrest.

Bush highly recommends other firms/businesses get on board with having a defibrillator on site.

“They will be devastated if something awful happens and they’re not prepared and equipped to deal with it. I cannot imagine how I would live the rest of my life if someone here were to have a cardiac incident and we did not have what we needed to take care of them.”

As for the expense?

“It’s not even a consideration, especially when I’m one of the oldest people here in the firm,” she laughed. “I’m the most likely recipient. Why do you think I made it mandatory?

“I have great people working with me here and I owe it to them to do what I can to make this as safe a workplace as I possibly can,” Bush noted To learn more about getting an AED or CPR training, visit http://heartbeatllc.com or http://american.redcross.org.

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