REALTORS WITH HEART was our tag-line for a recent training session available to Maui Realtors. Marilyn Griffin R(B) was the agent/ER nurse who came up with the great idea to enable more Maui real estate agents to be prepared to REALLY assist their clients in a time of need. As an emergency room nurse she knows the situation here on Maui can be pretty grim if you're not close to medical services. So many Maui properties for sale are off the beaten path and far from a large town, and qualified personnel might be far away. Many of our clients are seniors. A CPR trained Realtor could save a client's life if the need arose.
Chris Gilbert was the Emergency Medical Tech who taught the class to about 20 of us. In addition to the CPR training, we also got a quickie first aid class which was a real eye opener. This guy was a superb instructor and kept the pace brisk and the content interesting with his own anecdotes. We learned that those first few minutes of response can make it or break it for a victim of a stroke or heart attack. It is SO important to keep that person breathing!
We had the "dummies" to practice on, baby, child and adult versions. This was great hands-on training, and not as easy as it looks. Apparently it's good to hear the person's ribcage "crack" when you compress it, as a good sign that you're doing it right. For a small person like myself, you really have to put your weight into it when administering CPR to a large adult male. This is not the time to be timid! The instructor stressed that you WILL NOT hurt or endanger that person by pressing too hard. This is physical work and it will be difficult to keep up the pace, but DON"T STOP until the EMTs get there. If there are others available, take turns doing the compressions, for about 2 minutes each.
How to recognize a Heart Attack:
- chest discomfort - pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain
- discomfort in other areas of upper body
- shortness of breath
- sweating, nausea, lightheadedness
- sudden numbness or weakness in the face, arm or leg, especially on one side
- sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding
- sudden trouble seeing
- sudden trouble walking or dizziness
- sudden severe headache
What do you do when you find yourself in a one of these situations that needs immediate attention?
- phone 911, or get someone else to phone 911
- open airway, best done by tilting head back - check for normal breathing
- give 2 breaths then start chest compressions
- 30 compressions (done to the tune of "Staying Alive" by the Bee Gees )
- repeat - until help arrives
If it's an infant or small child, don't waste any time making that 911 call. Get them breathing, and start compressions first. After a few minutes make the call if nobody else is around to do it.
We also got a lesson about using defibrillators, which was surprisingly simple. I had never even seen a ventricular difibrillator before, so I'm glad to know how easy and foolproof they are to use... just peel and stick 2 patches to the torso, and push the start button! It will "warm up" and talk to you, to prompt you when to apply the jolt. The machines have easy to follow directions on them, and are battery powered. It you own one, be sure to check the batteries often. What's interesting is that the jolt of electricity doesn't start the heart beating, but actually stops it. Therefore a heart that is beating in an irregular manner will be stopped and should start again of it's own accord. Again, he stressed you can't harm anyone by using this, so don't hesitate to render aid if you can. Now that these tools are so readily available, many lives have been saved. Police are usually the first on the scene, and all police cars on Maui are now equipped with defibrillators.
Anyway, the point of this BLOG was to encourage other Realtors to get CPR certified ASAP. Contact your local American Red Cross for locations and info about CPR training in your area. We might find ourselves in a life and death situation where we can be of invaluable service to our clients. Isn't it all about the service?
Call or EMAIL directly to The Hunter
ALOHA from Maui agent Georgina M. Hunter R(S) 808 283-0635
Team member: Jim Sanders Realty Inc. Paia HI 96779