July 21, 2005
Cardiac arrest kills 1,000 Americans each year. Cardiopulmonary resuscitation, CPR, is advised immediately, but often times it's carried out improperly.
Paramedics say one solution is a new portable chest compressor. The machine is still being studied, but can calculate the correct amount of chest compressions a person would need.
The Charlottesville-Albemarle Rescue Squad still performs CPR's manually, but they say they are anxious to see the study's findings.
"There has been no human studies that have been published yet," said Dayton Haugh of C.A.R.S. "So we actually have to wait to see if this device is efficient for us in the field or whether it can only be used in the hospital or whether it's usable everywhere."
The chest compressor cost about $20,000, and once it's approved by the American Heart- Lung Association, C.A.R.S. will consider buying a few.