During the 1920s, Lucky Strike cigarettes dominated the industry and used the medical profession to tout the benefits of its product.
Why aren’t we still prescribing cigarettes to patients with sore throats 80 years later? Scientific research provided physicians with better information. In turn, the practice of medicine embraced the evidence and began making better recommendations to their patients.
Fortunately, medicine continues to draw upon new knowledge in order to evolve, as shown earlier this month by the 2015 update to the American Heart Association (AHA) guidelines for Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) and Emergency Cardiac Care (ECC).
While the new guidelines reinforce many sound, long-standing practices, they also provide new and valuable insight that we can all use to improve lifesaving capabilities. In particular, the new the CPR / ECC guidelines present a shift in the CPR training paradigm:
Two-Year Training Cycles Are Not Optimal
The AHA noted, “The standard retraining period for BLS [Basic Life Support] is every 2 years, despite growing evidence that BLS knowledge and skills decay rapidly after initial training…in as little as 3 months ….”.
Online = Traditional In-Person
The AHA continued, “Although instructor-led courses have been considered the gold-standard, multiple studies have demonstrated no difference in learning outcomes (cognitive performance, skill performance at course conclusion, and skill decay) when courses with self-instruction are compared with traditional instructor-led courses… recommendation is based on the absence of differences in learner outcomes, the benefits of increased standardization, plus the likely reduction of time and resources required for training.”.
Taken together, these two recommendations present a massive, far-reaching opportunity for communities, businesses, and the population at large.
For the past decades, the percentage of the population currently trained in CPR has been stuck in the low single digits – roughly 3%, despite clear evidence that training more people more frequently yields better lifesaving results. So, how do we move the needle? Online CPR training.
With the efficacy of online CPR training confirmed, it can be embraced as a practical means of overcoming the logistical, cost, and other barriers associated with the traditional “in-person” and “blended” formats. Equally, these same advantages make the online approach the ideal mechanism for training more frequently.
So, what are you prescribing? Are your decisions based on outdated information and habit or documented evidence?
If you still believe that cigarettes are healthy or that in-person AED/CPR training is the only effective way to train your employees, you might also be interested in this organization: