Rice to participate in free hands-only CPR training event

Members of the Rice community and the general public can receive free hands-only CPR training at Rice Stadium Feb. 6 when the university hosts one of seven training sites in Houston for a statewide effort spearheaded by Rice alum Faroukh Mehkri ’11.

The “Texas Two-Step: How to Save a Life Campaign” event aims to teach over 20,000 people across the state a simple but potentially lifesaving process through fast but focused training.

The 20-minute hands-on sessions will teach participants how to act quickly and to save a life by taking two steps:

  • 0125_CPRStep No. 1:  Call 911.
  • Step No. 2: Begin hands-only CPR by pushing hard and fast on the center of the chest.

According to the American Red Cross, 25 percent of Americans have been in a situation where someone needed CPR. Being trained in hands-only CPR — a technique that involves no mouth-to-mouth contact, only chest compressions — can make the lifesaving difference when someone suffers sudden cardiac arrest.

Mehkri, a former member of Rice Emergency Medical Services (REMS), said hands-only CPR is best used in emergencies where someone has seen another person collapse suddenly. “The hands-only technique increases the likelihood of surviving cardiac emergencies severalfold, and it’s critical that everyone learn since most cardiac emergencies occur outside medical settings,” he said.

It is not only difficult, but terrifying to recognize what to do when a loved one collapses in front of you, Mehkri said. “A 100 things go through your mind and they paralyze you,” he said. “Having a little bit of training to resort to can help you know exactly what to do and start the chain of survival.

The training sessions at Rice will be held every 30 minutes in the “R” Room at Rice Stadium from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Participants will practice on mannequins and will receive educational materials summarizing the skills. The sessions will be taught by medical professionals, including members of REMS.

Similar training sessions will take place in all the major cities in Texas. Organizers hope to break the Guinness World Record for the number of people being trained.

REMS Director Lisa Basgall said the event is possible through the collaboration of the medical students and emergency physicians from across the state, joining with undergraduates from REMS to host the event at Rice. The statewide effort involves a coalition of the Texas College of Emergency Physicians, a national nonprofit HealthCorps, Texas Medical Association, American College of Emergency Physicians, and leadership consulting firm MaveRx.

“We hope that many students, faculty and staff from across campus, as well as people from the surrounding neighborhood, will be able to attend the training day to learn these lifesaving skills,” Basgall said.

To register, visit texacep.org. Parking in the Greenbriar Lot will be available for $1.

For a list of other training sites in Houston and Texas, visit http://www.texacep.org/page/1601_2Step_locs.

 

About Arie Passwaters

Arie Wilson Passwaters is a Web editor in Rice University's Office of Public Affairs.