Joliet FD Promotes CPR/AED Awareness Week

The Joliet Fire Department (JFD) is promoting National Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) and Automated External Defibrillator (AED) Awareness Week, June 1-7, spotlighting how lives can be saved if more Americans know CPR and how to use an AED.

A cardiac arrest occurs when the heart suddenly stops beating or beats ineffectively to circulate blood to the brain and other vital organs. More than 350,000 people suffer a cardiac arrest annually in the United States, but sadly, only 11 percent survive. For every minute without immediate CPR, survival chances drop 10 percent. 90% of cardiac arrest patients who receive a shock from an AED within the first minute survive.

According to Fire Chief Jeff Carey, about 70 percent of out-of-hospital cardiac arrests happen in homes making it more likely, the person trying to be saved is a loved one. “We know the statistics which is why our department changed some of the methods we use to treat cardiac arrests in 2020 to increase survival rates,” explained Carey.  “After making those changes, we doubled our cardiac arrest survival rate. While that is good news, we can do better if more people were trained in CPR and there were more AEDs in the community.”
To address this need, the JFD started a community AED/CPR initiative to train 7500 people annually in hands-only CPR and teach them how to use an AED. The JFD offers these classes for free to all residents, schools, and businesses in Joliet.

Performing CPR before the fire department arrives drastically increases a person’s chance of survival. If you see someone collapse without warning, take immediate action with these three steps: Call 911, Start CPR, and use an AED if available.

If you would like to help save a life by learning these important lifesaving skills, contact the Joliet Fire Department Health Services Division at 815-724-3503 or email [email protected] to sign up for a free AED/CPR class.