Be a Super Hero! Learn CPR

June 11, 2017

According to the American Heart Association, each year, more than 350,000 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests occur in the United States. Approximately 90% of those people die because cardiopulmonary resuscitation, commonly known as CPR, was not performed by someone close by. 


When CPR is performed within the first couple of minutes of a cardiac arrest, the person’s chance of survival is doubled or tripled. Unfortunately, many people do not give CPR care to someone in need because they do not know how to do so or they are afraid of doing it incorrectly.


If that group includes you, now is the time to learn! 


The CPR Committee, a subcommittee of the Social, Cultural and Educational Committee of the Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA), is very excited to offer adult hands-only CPR, infant CPR, and choking relief training at Roosevelt Island Day on June 17. 




These life-saving skills are so important for everyone to know and so easy to learn. In 2008, the American Heart Association released a statement affirming that calling 911 and performing hands-only CPR – giving compressions (pushing hard and fast) in the center of the victim’s chest – until help arrives is an effective method of care. 


Unlike more advanced forms of CPR which also include mouth-to-mouth ventilation, this hands-only method of CPR simplifies the lifesaving procedure and is much easier for people to remember and perform, making it more likely that bystanders will intervene. This method is widely accepted by the medical community and has been popularized by celebrity doctors such as Dr. Oz.​ It is true that any CPR is better than no CPR.


RIRA’s CPR Committee has been offering training in these lifesaving skills to Roosevelt Islanders since 2014. At last year’s Roosevelt Island Day alone, we trained 216 Islanders. And, as of June 1, 2017, the CPR Committee has trained 1,104 Roosevelt Islanders in all. Because so many Islanders have been trained, our zip code may be the safest place in New York City for someone to suffer a heart attack.


There has been a great demand from Islanders for training in infant CPR and choking relief. Infant CPR is not considered to be “hands-only” as it does require giving mouth-to-mouth breaths to the infant. 


Last year we offered limited training for infant CPR and choking relief. This year, thanks to the generous donations of life-size infant CPR mannequins from the Roosevelt Island Urgent Care Center and others, we are now properly equipped and thrilled to offer infant training as well as adult training. 


It is fast and easy to learn these lifesaving skills. Adult hands-only CPR takes less than five minutes to learn and infant CPR and choking relief takes about five minutes. 


Please stop by between 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. and learn how to save the lives of adults and infants! You’ll find us with our red yoga mats and CPR mannequins on the ground at the southeast corner of the Good Shepherd Plaza. We can’t wait to see you.


Sharon Williams is chair of the RIRA CPR Committee. (























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