Organizations are sometimes cautious when considering AED Programs and CPR training. It can be especially challenging for nursing homes – legal implications, causing harm, staff schedules – there is a lot to think about.
These issues are not always the most straightforward, so it is easy to understand why many nursing homes have had no-CPR policies in the past.
At the defibshop, we believe in granting people the power to save a life. In America, approximately 1 in 10 out-of-hospital sudden cardiac arrests (SCA) occur in nursing homes. This is why we’re here to help nursing homes confidently develop programs to save more lives from SCA.
Improving your understanding is only half the battle. You probably already know how AED training will benefit your nursing home and understand how scheduling reminders of AED locations – and other simple solutions - can make a big difference.
Now, it’s time to talk about cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) training, as both an AED and CPR can drastically increase survival chances.
Risk of legal action
The first thing to consider is the law. Organizations, including nursing homes, are often worried about being sued after using CPR or an AED to revive a victim of SCA.
However, there are many cases of legal action being taken against nursing homes for not providing CPR and resulting in a fatal tragedy.
It is more likely that the eyes of the law will see a failure to provide appropriate treatment as neglectful. There have been many cases in the past, where employees have been criminally charged for neglect, after failing to perform CPR on a nursing home resident.
Therefore, it is better to assume that if you are on the side of saving a life, it’s more likely the law will be on your side too.
CPR and AED requirements by state
AED and CPR requirements vary from state to state. For example, Wyoming not only requires AED owners to have CPR training but to also keep this updated every 2 years.
Many states like New Jersey, Rhode Island, Texas, and Maryland require nursing homes to have facilities and training to protect residents from cardiac arrest.
It’s worth checking what your state requires from you which is why we developed this easy to use state law map.
Federal standards of facilities
Your state may not require it, but CPR training is strongly encouraged at a federal level by The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). This is the federal agency that is responsible for quality standards, surveys and certifications for nursing homes.
In 2015, the CMS published guidance to surveyors clarifying that nursing homes should remove their no-CPR policies and have CPR-certified staff available at all times. CPR trained staff should also be kept up to date with regular practical training.
Advance directives and DNRs
CPR can be a particularly complicated issue for nursing homes, especially when it comes to advance directives and Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) orders. Sometimes when residents are very sick, they request an advance directive to decline CPR or other life-saving measures.
Therefore, it’s important for nursing homes to keep both records and staff up to date on DNRs. Both the CMS and The Society for Post-Acute and Long-Term Care Medicine argue that nursing home facilities should be responsible for providing basic CPR for residents without DNRs.
Increase your chances of saving a life
Research has revealed that the older a person gets, the less likely they are to receive CPR.
Whether it’s legal worries or fear of causing harm, you and your employees should feel they can do as much to help in a cardiac arrest emergency. Maybe a little training is all they need to boost their confidence and increase their chances of saving a life.
As the American Heart Association reports CPR can double – or sometimes even triple – the chances of survival after a cardiac arrest. We believe those are chances worth taking.
If you think so too, then talk to us on 800 989 7768 to find out more or email firstname.lastname@example.org