Stayin' Alive: CPR/AED Training at the Columbus Medical Association

Holly Herron, System Director for OhioHealth EMS

This past Wednesday, the CMA and Affiliates piled into their training rooms for the monthly all team meeting, which is usually pretty routine. Except this time, they were greeted by 6 tables of CPR dummies and the smiling faces of OhioHealth EMS ready to train everyone on the use of Automatic External Defibrillator or AED.

Being a medical association, CMA program COTS, figured we should be trained on what to do in case of a medical emergency and how to properly use the AEDs in the building. “It takes quite a few minutes for the fire department, even in the city, to get somewhere. I think the average is about 7 minutes. With no circulation, at about 4 minutes your brain is gone.” said Holly Herron System Director for OhioHealth EMS. Herron and her team from OhioHealth EMS are founding members of COTS and graciously agreed to teach everyone free of charge.

The class started with CPR, which is a lot simpler now than in years past. “The changes in CPR are that you can now do hands-only CPR. The intention there is that if someone would have possibly done CPR, but they don’t feel comfortable doing mouth-to-mouth, now, with new standards, they don’t have to … they can do compressions in-between the use of the AED.” Herron explained. Hands only CPR is very simple and only two steps: call 911 and two minutes of chest compressions to the catchy beat of “Stayin’ Alive.”

After a quick lunch, it was time to tackle the slightly ominous AED. “AEDs were intended for the lay public. So, the important part is that everyone understands that the AED is going to do all the work, it’s going to talk to them, it’s going to tell them each step.” said Herron. And she was right. The devices are simple enough, put the patch on and listen to the machine, if it recommends a shock then press the indicated button and get right back to CPR. 

The training ended with a little friendly competition. Two representatives from each training team took turns doing the 2 minutes of CPR and administering an AED “shock” on a dummy. The winners, a group of women from PCC, took home an OhioHealth backpack and everyone took home the knowledge of how to save a life. 

CPR/AED Steps:

1.      Call 911

2.      Start hands only CPR

3.      Have someone bring the AED

4.      Attach the AED pads while still performing CPR

5.      Listen to the Machine

6.      Resume CPR

If you’d like to have this training at your workplace visit:

Annie Wilson