Heart Association Rolls Out Traveler-Friendly CPR Training

Got five minutes to spare before your flight? Use the time to learn CPR, courtesy of the American Heart Association.

Flight delayed, have a layover, or even five minutes between flights? That’s just enough time to learn basic CPR, thanks to the American Heart Association.

The organization is installing CPR training kiosks at major airports to introduce travelers to hands-only CPR, which simply involves chest compressions. Using the touchscreen, travelers can navigate through the five-minute program, which features a how-to video, a practice session involving a rubber torso or practice mannequin, and a 30-second CPR test. Travelers then get feedback on their performance, namely the depth and rate of compressions and proper hand placement.

Kiosks will be set up at Chicago O’Hare, Indianapolis, Las Vegas’ McCarran, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta, and Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall airports, in addition to the pilot kiosk currently at Dallas/Ft. Worth airport. Another two will be placed at The Global Center for Health Innovation in Cleveland and Anthem’s office in Washington, DC.

While this program alone won’t fully train individuals in CPR, it can make them more comfortable to step up in an emergency, said Dr. Vemuri Murthy, a volunteer and spokesperson with AHA. For example, in 2014 a 21-year-old student was able to save a peer’s life by performing the CPR methods he’d learned at the Dallas kiosk until EMS arrived.

More than 359,000 cardiac arrests occur outside the hospital each year, and 90 percent of these cases result in death. But if a bystander provides CPR while waiting for emergency personnel, the victim’s survival chances double or triple. AHA hopes this short introduction could help reduce these statistics. The Dallas pilot kiosk alone has trained more than 25,000 travelers since 2013.

Murthy noted, however, that the hands-only CPR taught at these kiosks will only work on teens and adults who have collapsed.

“Cardiac arrest remains a leading cause of death in the United States, and survival depends on immediately receiving CPR from someone nearby,” Dr. Clifton Callaway, chair of AHA’s Emergency Cardiovascular Care committee, said in a statement. “Although in-person training is still the best way to learn high-quality CPR, the kiosk will provide additional training that could make a difference and save the life of someone you love.”

These kiosks are an extension of a campaign to simplify performing CPR in order to ensure more people are able and willing to help in the case of cardiac arrest. Making training and information so easily accessible to people who have the time to spare could help in this endeavor.

“We are stuck in the airport with nothing to do either between flights or due to flight delays, so these kiosks are such an easy, fast way to learn life-saving, hands-only CPR skills,” Murthy said.

(Handout photo/American Heart Association)

Alex Beall

By Alex Beall

Alex Beall is an associate editor for Associations Now with a masters in journalism and a penchant for Instagram. MORE

Got an article tip for us? Contact us and let us know!