The Importance of early Defibrillation.

For a long time we have known the importance of using AED’s in situations of Sudden Cardiac Arrest, or SCA.

Science is making great progression in understanding the timing as to when these devices are best used.  However, the simple fact remains, that for bystanders, or the average first aider, the sooner the AED can be placed and a shock delivered, the better!  Recently at the Emergency Care Conference in Toronto, some of the leading experts in the field of emergency response and the science of saving lives, came together to discuss, just how we can be better.  While it may not make sense fiscally to have an AED on every corner, the more we can have out there, the better the chance that it will be used to save a life.  Here is a great video about just how amazing a difference these devices can have.  The combination of someone being trained and comfortable in using an AED, and willing to use those skills when the situation arises, we can all help save lives.  Let’s make more stories like Anna’s.

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A great way to celebrate Red Cross Month is to get trained in First Aid and CPR, and what better way to do that, than with a friend!  Spots are filling up fast, a deal this good is only on for the month of March.  Book your spot today to take full advantage of this great deal.

Ag Safety Week

This week marks Ag Safety Week in Canada – 2015

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This week is all about creating awareness is an industry that is long overdue for some serious safety upgrades.  Agriculture has always had a big allowance on safety regulations due to low numbers of paid employees, and lack of infrastructure to support, regulate, and inspect.

Initiatives like these are thus much more important as it is then put to each farm operator, owner, and worker to be a Safety Advocate.  As with all safety, it starts with you!  Lets use this year’s Ag Safety Week to spread the good word, start the discussion and make safety a part of our Farm’s operation.

So what can I do?  Well, there are many things that you can do on your farm, and not just this week, but all year and everyday!

  • Get Informed
    There are many great and FREE resources that are available to you.  Try checking out these sites, just to name a few.
    www.agsafetyweek.ca
    http://ontario.ca/b82g
  • Start the discussion
    Make it a priority to talk with everyone who works, plays, and lives on your farm.  Everyone can benefit from discussing the potential hazards that exist on the farm.  Remember, the only stupid question, is the one you don’t ask.  Discussions can also create awareness regarding any myths or misunderstandings that might exist, as well as learning how different people are viewing safety in your organization.
  • Time To Train
    Training does not have to be all that time consuming or costly!  There are a number of ways that you can receive training and additional resources to assist you in creating positive change on your farm.  This could be anything from an hour spent online to attending a workshop or conference to assist you with tips from the pros.

 

In summary, Ag Safety is something that we all need to be improving upon.  It doesn’t have to cost a lot to save a lot, and any expenses that may be incurred will surely not surpass the costs that come with having a farm accident on your property.  Safety is more than a week long promotion, it is an attitude and a way of life.

I have included an older Farm Safety Poster for a few reasons.  Firstly, this one in specific highlights a big problem with Ag, in that it is where we live, and that can mean that it is a family affair, and children often get exposure at an early age, and with such strong pride comes old adages such as ” but we’ve always done it this way.” These are not only dangerous but reckless and irresponsible as well.  Secondly, I truly hope that our next generation of farmers doesn’t need to be reminded of these messages.  Time to make some serious change happen.

Let’s work together to make Ag known as one of the SAFEST industries around!

#CASW #GrowSafety

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On-Line CPR Training

 SHAMBLRecently, and unfortunately at an increasing rate, I am noticing internet  ads suggesting that the new and easy way to get trained in CPR is by  doing it all online.  The premise of these advertisements, to a trainer such  as myself, are both laughable and a definite stomach-turninng level of  scary, all at the same time.  Not becasue this method threatens my validity  in the role as instructor,  but because I am concerned as to the number of  individuals that will be drawn in to believeing that an hour spent online  can properly teach you how to perform the skills necessary to help save a  life.
It is true that there is a new and improved delivery method coming  in the very near future, one that is best described as a Blended Delivery  Method. This new method will include an online portion which will  involve participants completeing learning modules at their own pace and  convenience within the allotted time-frame.  When, and only when, the  online portion is successfully completed, will you be able to complete the  in-class portion.   The in-class portion will require you to put the theory and skills that were shown online, into practical use.  As an instructor it will be my job to ensure that the information you were shown and tested on has actually been learned, and to instruct with real-life tips as how to properly and safely deliver the skills.blended learning

Cardi0Pulmonary Resuscitation – CPR; its a very important, worth-while, and life-saving skill to know.  Instructing this skill is a fine balance.  On one hand, the techniques to accomplish this skill are not tedious, they are not overly complicated, and they are certainly acheiveable by most all of us.  Half of the battle in instructing CPR is to make participants feel like this is something that they can do, and in the thick of the moment, something that they will be able to do well.  On the other hand, we are talking about dealing with situations where someone is not breathing, and the vital importance that is placed on these simple skills.  The other half then becomes solidifying the simple skills with the knowledge base of why and how it works.  When we understand the principle behind it, we will all be more successful at it.  This balance is delicate and honestly dependent on some human interaction, it cannot be taught solely online.                     blended learning2I understand the way our world works, and also see where the trends are taking us. I also acknowledge that if we can shorten the training, or make training even more convenient for our busy schedules that it will catch like wild fire.  There are however two main issues that I have with this appealing new method.  One; I have been on teleconferences with media presentations, I have completed online training for various other courses and certificates, and honestly, these applications were not given my full attention.  Both distractions at home or other programs (games) that I could possibly have running during this time are going to take away from the training at hand.  I am not trying to lay blame, its human nature, and in our world of distraction and instant gratification, unavoidable.  Two; the attraction of a lower price and less time requirement are too irresistable and unfortunately misleading.  I am always disappointed when I have participants express how their last instructor did their 4 hour course in just 1.5 hours.  The surface appraisal appears the same, where you have paid the same amount, and received the same certificate, so if you can save 2.5 hours, why not?  The why not is because you have only cheated yourself!  You now have an impression that you are equipped to save a life, and a certificate to say you are good to remember those skills for the next three years.  Reality is, you don’t.  Sure, I can speed through the course content, and yes, you will know some skills for a day or two.  This obviously does not have you actually prepared to act when a loved-one, family member, co-worker, or complete stranger is in a desperate time of need.

The time that is required in a traditional course is to give the information time to set in, really solidify, and obviously have a chance to put your hands to a manikin’s chest and feel it.

In summary, be careful of what you’re getting, or are led to believe you’re getting.  What might seem quick and easy today, could leave you blank and confused when the actual situation arises.  I know we are all busy, we all have things to do, places to be, and budgets to keep.  However if you have a spouse, father, mother, grandparent, child, neighbour, sibling, neice, nephew, co-worker, or have ever been in a public place, and you really want to know how to act in an emergency situation, you owe it to those you love to get the appropriate and proper training.
Please keep in mind, our goal here is not to profit, but rather to create a society of individuals whom are prepared and willing to help!

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Training that matters, from people who care.

Compression-Only CPR

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I would like to re-introduce one of my favorite videos for teaching the various techniques that accompany CPR.  This technique is quite simple in theory; the First Aider gives compressions, in the right location, at the right pace, at the right time, and doesn’t stop until more professional help arrives.
This video comes to us in thanks to The British Heart Foundation.  While some of the information is more specific to our friends across the pond, in the United Kingdom.  The skill set is the exact same.  If you should find someone who is unresponsive and not breathing, Call EMS 9-1-1, and start compressions, pushing at least 2 inches down on an adult chest.  Pushing on the centre of the chest, approximately on the armpit line.  Your compressions should be done to the rate of 100 per minute, or as the video shows, to the infamous Bee Gee’s song, “Stayin’ Alive”.

Carbon Monoxide

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During this cold season, we all need to be aware of the issues that surround Carbon Monoxide Poisoning.  This silent killer sneaks up on those unexpected people who are improperly using devices that produce CO.  This can range from operating a barbecue too close to a structure or overhang, to using a space-heater without proper ventilation.  This gas is especially dangerous because it has no taste, no smell, and no colour.

Aside from those situations where there is an element of human error.  There are other risks at play.  The average home has between 4 and 6  appliances that are at potential for creating Carbon Monoxide.   This group will include things like a fuel burning water heater, fireplace, dryer, stove, or furnace.  Check out this great poster from the Ontario Fire Marshall.

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If you think you or someone around you is experiencing the signs of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning it is important to act quickly.

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The big danger with CO poisoning is it starts by just making you ‘sleepy’ and thus you just fall deeper into sleep as this gas slowly robs you of your oxygen.

 

To really send this point home, there are a number of other reference and reminders out there.  Here is a great video done up by some of the local Fire Departments and supporting agencies, it is certainly worth a  watch.

In closing, with all of the advancements that we have made, we can easily prevent fatalities from this sneaky gas.

  • Most importantly – invest in a CO Alarm.  There are many different options out there.  Some models even have built in batteries that last the full ten years of the Alarm’s lifespan.  Whichever model you choose, test the alarm function on the device monthly.
  • Have fuel burning appliances tested and maintained regularly.  This includes checking the element as well as the exhaust systems that are in place.  Remove snow from vents on the exterior of your home or business so that deadly gasses and fumes are allowed to escape.

Lets make our homes safer, lets invest in our family, our livelihood, lets invest is us.  Lets make this a priority.

Think about your home,

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How long will the remote sit like this with dead batteries, and how long will the smoke or CO Alarm wait for its battery change?

While I hope you never need to use a smoke or CO Alarm, the one time you do, it could save your life.

Check out these two Smoke Alarms.  The one on the left has already saved the lives of a family, the one on the right hasn’t yet.

 

B2AFa8HCQAAfWdfAs we move into the spring edition of the Daylight Savings Time change, we encourage all to check and change the batteries in your Smoke and CO Alarms.