First responder basic life support
Chain of survival & CPR
The cardiac (heart) chain of survival consists of four steps that can increase the chances of somebody living through a cardiac arrest. They consist of early access, early CPR, early defibrillation, and early advanced care.
Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) is an emergency procedure that is done to preserve essential brain and cardiac functions. It is an important skill which saves lives if applied early enough. In order to properly learn the steps of CPR, you should take a certified CPR course.
The Volunteer First Responder network of volunteers understands how important the chain of survival, early CPR and early defibrillation can make a difference.
One of the successful stories occurred in early June 2017. A volunteer first responder who by profession, is an ED doctor, happened to come across a middle-aged patient who had collapsed onboard a bus. He immediately initiated early and effective CPR. Coupled with several shocks later, the patient was brought back to life at CWM Hospital ED – a testament that the chain of survival is crucial and does work.
In conjunction with the FNU Emergency Medicine (EM) Faculty, VFR (Fiji) members continue to undergo First Responder – Basic Life Support (BLS) training to maintain their competency in CPR and Automatic External Defibrillator (AED) use.
VFR (Fiji) POV rapid response vehicles are AED-equipped and have since been deployed on multiple cases, ever since the first AEDs were donated by Ambulance Victoria – thanks to Mr Tony Walker and Dr Anne Creaton. The number of AED-equipped POVs has continued to increase and with more awareness, other prehospital agencies are now following suit equipping ambulances with AEDs.
Improving pre-hospital care response
In a IWA funded project led by EM Educator, Dr Anne Creaton, all health centers between Lami and Nausori in the Central Division now have an AED which has also been put to use multiple times in the past few months. In instances where First Responders have no AED on hand, they have managed transits via a nearby Health Center to pickup an AED and utilize directly at the scene.