It is estimated that approximately 600,000 people each year in the United States experience a cardiac arrest, and survival rates for arrests that occur in community settings are less than 6%. On June 30, 2015, the Institute of Medicine released a report on strategies for increasing survival rates after cardiac arrest. The report calls for effective treatment, demanding an immediate response from bystanders to recognize cardiac arrest, call 911, and initiate cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). Given that the time interval for Emergency Medical Service (EMS) arrival is often 7 to 8 minutes or longer, based on American Heart Association (AHA) research, survival falls 7% to 10% for each minute without CPR. Chest compressions during CPR can generate a small but critical amount of blood flow to vital organs such as the brain and heart until circulation is restored by EMS personnel. While defining high-quality CPR, the AHA puts priority on specific characteristics including the rate of compressions, depth, and full release after each compression (recoil). To follow AHA's guidelines and improve CPR technique, researchers at the University of North Texas propose an effective smartphone application that can be used to provide real-time evaluation and feedback during CPR. The developed science and technology from this EAGER project can be used to evaluate and certify community workers, provide resuscitation quality improvement (RQI), and offer assistance to bystanders during a cardiac arrest.
Typical CPR training for health care workers entails watching videos and listening to lectures in a classroom setting every two years. Looking to the future, the EAGER campaign has the potential to transform the way CPR training and administration is handled. Based on the data yielded from the EAGER proposal, healthcare workers would only need to spend 5-10 minutes each month to effectively improve CPR administration and substantially increase the survival rate of patients. In order to accomplish this, we propose to: i) change the CPR training period to 5-10 minutes each month instead of one day every two years, ii) effectively assist bystanders who have no prior training in CPR administration, and iii) create a special glove that will house the mobile phone, start the CPR application automatically, and communicate with 9-1-1 operators and physicians. Hence, the success of EAGER can transform the way we administer and offer CPR training. With favorable outcomes of the proposed research, variability of effective-CPR would dramatically be reduced, leading to higher survival rates. This EAGER project advances interdisciplinary knowledge (mechanics, fluid control, signal processing, and artificial intelligence) in the hopes that cardiac arrest survival no longer depends on environmental factors (e.g., inside or outside of hospital).