Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin is launching a partnership with the American Heart Association to spread awareness of cardiopulmonary resuscitation.
The procedure was used to help save Hamlin’s life when he suffered cardiac arrest during a “Monday Night Football” game last month.
“Once again, I want to thank everybody for the love and support over these past few weeks. As you know, CPR saved my life earlier this year on the field. And CPR could easily save your life or someone you love,” he said in a video posted to social media on Tuesday.
“That’s why I’m proud to announce that I’m partnering with the American Heart Association and kicking off Damar Hamlin’s ‘3 for Heart CPR Challenge,’ and of course this one’s got three steps,” said Hamlin, who wears jersey No. 3.
He said the first step is to go to Heart.org/3 to watch a one-minute video that teaches how to perform hands-only CPR.
The second step calls for Americans to make donations to the American Heart Association that Hamlin said would fund CPR education and training.
The final step is to challenge three friends to do the same thing, which led him to issue the challenge to now-retired NFL quarterback Tom Brady, former first lady Michelle Obama and NBA star LeBron James.
Teaming up with @american_heart in a BIG way!
— 𝐃𝐚𝐦𝐚𝐫 𝐇𝐚𝐦𝐥𝐢𝐧 (@HamlinIsland) February 1, 2023
On Jan. 2, Hamlin collapsed on the field during a game against the Bengals at Paycor Stadium in Cincinnati. As he lay there surrounded by his teammates, Bills assistant athletic trainer Denny Kellington performed CPR on Hamlin.
The American Heart Association said that after the incident, web traffic to its CPR site spiked by 200 percent, according to NBC News.
“The lesson with Damar is that getting [CPR] started probably, as soon as possible, is the one thing that saved his life. He had the advantage of having health care staff in the field when most individuals in the United States don’t,” said Dr. Paul Chan, a cardiologist at Saint Luke’s Mid-America Heart Institute in Kansas City, Missouri.
NBC News reported that about 90 percent of the 350,000 cardiac arrests that take place every year in America do so outside of hospitals, adding that about 90 percent of those stricken do not survive because of a delay in being treated.
“With every minute of delay, there’s a 7 to 10 percent decrease in survivability,” said Dr. Michael Emery, a sports cardiologist at the Cleveland Clinic.
CPR is “the most profound, life-changing thing you could potentially learn and do for someone,” Emery said.
A 2018 Cleveland Clinic survey showed that 54 percent of those responding said they knew how to perform CPR but only about one in six people understood that the recommended technique for bystanders is to use chest compressions only.
— Cleveland Clinic (@ClevelandClinic) February 1, 2018
“When someone is suffering from cardiac arrest, time is not on their side,” said Dr. Steve Nissen, chairman of Cardiovascular Medicine at the Cleveland Clinic.
“Immediate CPR can be the difference between life and death, doubling or even tripling a person’s chance of survival,” he said.
“It’s a skill that can be easily learned, and we encourage everyone to equip themselves with this knowledge and not be afraid to use it during an emergency.”
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.
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