April 14, 2015
Trinity trains medical, security personnel in Basic Life Support

On Saturday, March 28, Trinity School of Medicine Emergency Cardiac Care Training Site conducted training in Basic Life Support (BLS) for a number of individuals in the medical and security professions.

According to coordinator and instructor of the programme Dr Richard Nedd, “Basic Life Support is the assistance that is given to a person whose body function is unable to support life.{{more}} This means they are not breathing and providing vital oxygen to organs, or there is no circulation to transport that oxygen around the body: either the heart has stopped working effectively or their breathing processes have been compromised. It basically involves the skill of providing cardiopulmonary resuscitation or CPR – assisting the function of the heart by chest compressions and assisting the function of the lungs by giving breaths or ventilations.”

In outlining the objectives of the training and detailing its importance, Dr Nedd explained that “Many years ago, when one considered cause of death, a lot of people used to die from infections and so on. Nowadays, cardiac causes of death are far more common.” He said that around the world, a person dies from a cardiac event every 90 seconds. “If the heart stops beating or if the patient stops breathing, then it does not necessarily mean that that person is not salvageable, because there are conditions which can cause that to happen, which are reversible. So, the idea is to give this person the opportunity to be treated by assisting in this vital function until they can get to advanced help,” he proffered.

The training, which was offered for the first time to a mixed group of individuals, included two students and two faculty members of Trinity: Ian Valmont, Candice Grant, Dr Nagadharshan Devendra, and Dr Raju Panta; four police officers: Assistant Superintendent of Police Anthony Humphrey, Station Sergeant Hezron Ballantyne, Sergeant Renrick Cato, and Corporal Ashlyn Bute; and four Trinity security officers: Shemaiah Joyles, Clevon Simmons, Bradley Primus, and Otis Jack. Six BLS certified instructors from the Trinity faculty imparted the information: Drs Conrad Nedd, Frances Jack, Amrie Morris-Patterson, Mignonette Sotto, and Jamil Ibrahim.

The BLS programme, which is certified by the American Heart Association, presents a real opportunity for persons to make the difference in saving a life. It offers a period of training with presentations and practice, and written and practical assessment. Successful participants re issued a wallet-sized certificate which could be readily presented in an emergency situation. The document is valid for two years, after which the holder must be retrained in updated course content. This training is recorded with the American Heart Association.

All participants were extremely enthused with what was delivered at the training. The general consensus was that the information was relevant and very useful for emergencies that could possibly occur on the job and in the community. Trinity School of Medicine Emergency Cardiac Care Training Site continues to train its students in BLS, which is a necessary requirement for all students. It has an interest in training particularly health care workers in St Vincent and the Grenadines. Plans are being organized to make the service available in the future, firstly to that category of individuals and then to other persons.(Contributed by Gloria Williams)