Every citizen is a life saver – WRAH (World Restart a Heart)
The mortality due to sudden cardiac arrest in India is high as 428/10000 and accounts to 60% of all cardiac deaths outside the hospital. Every minute delay of resuscitation of the cardiac arrest victim reduces chance of survival by 7%-10%. The WRAH (World Restart a Heart) activity was initiated with goal to increase public awareness about the importance of bystander CPR (cardio-pulmonary resuscitation) and therefore the rates of bystander CPR for victims of cardiac arrest. In India, in most of the cases, it takes too long for the emergency services to arrive on scene after the patient collapses. Thus, the most effective way to increase survival and favorable outcome in a situation of cardiac arrest is to train lay bystanders. The chance of survival of the distressed will increase by two to four folds, if CPR is provided immediately, as every minute counts in resuscitation.
Hundreds and thousands of lives can be saved if high survival rates could be achieved. In order to achieve the goal, the ILCOR (International Liaison Committee on Resuscitation) councils of the world have agreed to participate in WRAH. The target was to educate children in CPR so as to take a legacy and thought forward into the future. Hence, it was decided to make CPR training compulsory in school. However, the initiative taken is to be as inclusive as possible, i.e. trying to take both children and adults under the purview of CPR training.
As the saying goes, this activity is taught to restart a heart which has suddenly stopped beating. It is a step wise approach of a collapsed victim and if followed as learned, any person can save a life.
The IRC (Indian Resuscitation Council) have developed simple guidelines for primary delivery of CPR called Compressions only life support (COLS). The guidelines have been developed to learn and teach a simple, practical, uniform and an acceptable act, across the country so as to overcome the geographical and linguistic barriers. The COLS is taught as a sequential series when one is a lone saver or if more than one trained persons are present, so as to save on time and increase survival rates.
Learning and teaching COLS attributes a feeling of empowerment and leads the lay bystander to come forward in Emergency and life and death situations.