Florida golfers are dying from cardiac arrest on golf courses– some golfers are saved but the large majority die – about 95%. In the United States sudden cardiac arrest claims about 340,000 lives each year – or around 930 every day according to the American Heart Association.
Sudden cardiac arrest is the leading cause of death on the golf course. This is true for many reasons including the average age of golfers is typically higher than other sports. It is also due to time and distance. When dealing with cardiac arrest, a few minutes can be the difference between life and death. For a victim experiencing sudden cardiac arrest, for each minute that passes without defibrillation the victims chances of survival decrease by about 10 percent. From the time of collapse, if it takes someone from the clubhouse 5 minutes to reach the victim with an AED – the victims odds of survival have decreased 50%.
Here are a few questions to ask yourself about sudden cardiac arrest and the golf course. 1. Standing at the farthest point on the course, if you suddenly collapsed in cardiac arrest who would get help? How will they get help – cell phone or run for help? 2. Which golf employee will most likely respond first? 3. What equipment will they bring with them? 4. What is their level of training? How long since their last CPR and First Aid class? 5. How long will it take the ambulance to reach the golf course? 6. How long will it take the ambulance to reach the injured golfer?
In the questions above we talked about calling for help. It is quite possible that even if you have a cell phone, you may not have a usable cell signal on the golf course. If this is the case, you may need to send someone to get help. But even if you do have a cell phone and it works, who are you calling, the club house, 911 or both?
The CPR School, LLC works with Florida golf courses and country clubs setting up CPR AED and First Aid Safety programs. When hired by a golf club we typically walk the course, talk to the employees and study the area. There is a lot more to our CPR AED and First Aid programs than a typical press press blow CPR class. We do more than teach classes and AED sales. We look at all risks and look for cost effective solutions to minimize these risks. Our goal is to increase the safety of the members and the staff while decreasing the clubs potential liability.
Why do we need training, can’t we just dial 911 and wait for emergency medical personnel? Sudden cardiac arrest, which is the leading cause of death in the United States kills more people than breast cancer, lung cancer, and AIDS combined. Currently 95 percent of all cardiac arrest victims die. Without quick action, your victim will almost certainly die.
Can anyone teach CPR AED and First Aid? This is a common mistake I often see. In an effort to reduce costs, managers either go with the low bid or attempt to do the training in house. You should never cut costs on life saving training or life saving equipment. Would you have your maintenance man install your fire suppression system? Would you have human resources test and inspect your fire extinguishers? The answer is no, you would not. Both fire suppression systems and fire extinguishers are designed to save property. CPR AED and first aid courses are designed to save lives. Given the choice between saving lives or saving property, which in your opinion is more important and which do you think could result in the greatest liability? Make certain your instructor is a full time instructor that has actually performed CPR and used AEDs in real life on real people. Having people teach CPR that have never done CPR on real people is like taking golfing lessons from a guy that has never really played golf before. Bottom line – always hire a full time professional.
Who should be CPR AED and First Aid Certified? Everyone is my answer. Training should include the golf-course superintendent, the club managers, the rangers, starters, the golf pro, golf pro assistants, food and beverage managers, greenskeepers, caddies, and all clubhouse staff.
Should we offer CPR and AED class for our golf members? Yes, often the golfers are the first to witness a medical emergency. When the golfers know what to do, who to call, and how to perform CPR until help arrives it can double the victims chance of survival.
Which club employee will most likely respond first? Most often it will be the golf ranger. A golf ranger patrols the golf course to prevent unauthorized persons from using facilities, keep play running smoothly, and assist injured or ill players. The ranger also renders first aid to injured or ill players.
The above job description for a golf ranger mentions assisting and treating injured golfers. But how well is the golf ranger trained and equipped? Does the ranger have the proper training to recognize and treat a life threatening medical emergency and if so, does the ranger have the right medical equipment to assist? You should ask these questions next time you are on the golf course. If you do not like the answer you get, please print a copy of this article and share it with management.
What medical equipment should be on the golf rangers cart? The golf ranger and all golf employees rendering first aid assistance should have the proper PPE - personal protective equipment to protect themselves from bloodborne pathogens. PPE will include safety glasses, medical exam gloves and a CPR mask. The first aid kit should include all of the basics including bandages, cold packs, and other items commonly found in a basic first aid kit and most importantly, there should be an Automated External Defibrillator (AED). All of these supplies, including the AED should be kept in a waterproof case kept on the rangers golf cart.
What is an Automated External Defibrillator - AED? An Automated External Defibrillator or AED is a portable, battery operated electronic device about the size of a laptop computer. The AED automatically diagnoses the potentially life threatening cardiac arrhythmias of ventricular fibrillation and ventricular tachycardia in a victim and is able to treat the patient by an electrical shock which stops the arrhythmia, allowing the heart to re-establish an effective rhythm. AEDs are designed to be simple so that anyone can use one.
How much does an Automated External Defibrillator cost? I recently delivered several AEDs in waterproof carry cases to a golf course. The cost delivered to the customer was just under $1,900. There are cheaper options but this customer wanted a good quality AED and did not want to cut corners on safety.
What medical emergencies does your CPR AED First Aid Safety class cover? Our CPR AED and First Aid classes cover emergency medical care for a variety of different emergencies and life saving techniques including: Legal/Ethical Concerns, Bloodborne Pathogens, Calling 911 and Emergency Medical Services, Scene Management and Patient Assessment, Bleeding, Cuts and Shock, Burns, Falls, Sudden Cardiac Arrest and Heart Attack, Drowning, Eye Injuries, Head and Face Injuries, Injuries to Muscles, Bones and Joints, Allergic Reactions and Respiratory Emergencies, Diabetic Emergencies, Seizures and Strokes, Heat Exhaustion and Hypothermia, Poisonings and Overdoses and a variety of other medical emergencies.
In addition to first aid treatment for medical emergencies what else do you cover? Our classes are student driven. By this I mean no 2 classes are alike. We encourage the students to talk about medical emergencies that they have seen either on the job or at home. We discuss proper treatment for these emergencies, what to do, and what not to do. We go through many different scenarios and we also stress accident prevention. As the saying goes, an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure. Often we discover safety concerns that management was unaware of. Through our classroom discussions, management is then able to take action to correct any safety issues.
How often should CPR and First Aid training occur? The old expression use it or lose it comes to mind. The American Heart Association CPR AED and First Aid certification cards are valid for a period of 2 years. Every 2 years may be sufficient for the actual training classes but safety drills, similar to the fire drills we had in school should be conducted on a regular basis. These drills apply what was learned in the classroom to real life scenarios that can occur on the job site.
What about a first aid kit? A good first aid kit is very important however it does not necessarily mean signing an expensive service contract to fill your first aid kit or wall mounted first aid cabinet with overpriced bandages and aspirin. In fact, I discourage having OTC medications in the company first aid kit. Keeping your first aid kit simple is often best. In addition to your PPE listed above you will want bandages, medical tape, burn gel, eye wash and an assortment of band aids in various sizes.
The CPR School is a mobile CPR AED and First Aid company. We travel to our Florida clients and talk with them about their safety needs. We perform an onsite safety survey and risk assessment, and decide how many AEDs are necessary, which type of AED is best, and conduct CPR AED and First Aid Safety Training certification classes for the golf course and club house staff. We work with our clients every step of the way from A through Z and are always professional and discreet.
For more information, to schedule a class or to purchase an Automated External Defibrillator or AED batteries and electrode pads please visit us on the web at e-mail us at Keith@TheCPRSchool.com or call The CPR School at 561-762-0500
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