“Don'€™t Miss a Beat” to train as many as 3,000 people Oct. 25 to know how to save a life

 Mayor Tom Henry joining with six community partners announced today they will offer free hands-only CPR training as part of “Don'€™t Miss a Beat” at the Regional Public Safety Academy, 7602 Patriot Crossing, Oct. 25.

The hour-and-15-minute class, offered four times that Saturday, will train community members ages 16 and older how to give effective chest compressions '€“ using manikins '€“ to adults who have suffered a heart attack.

“Having a diverse and large number of people to know how to perform hands-only CPR can save the lives of Fort Wayne residents,” said Mayor Henry. “You never know who you'€™ll be able to help. It could be your spouse, parent, neighbor or even a complete stranger who will forever be grateful you spent a small amount of time this October learning compression CPR.”

The City of Fort Wayne has partnered with Three Rivers Ambulance Authority, American Red Cross, Lutheran Health Network, Parkview Health, Focus on Health and the Fort Wayne/Allen County Department of Health to offer the free classes.

Compression or hands-only CPR focuses on chest compressions only, no breaths, to keep blood moving in a victim whose heart has stopped beating. It has become increasingly popular in recent years as research has shown it to be effective in helping to save lives.

“We hope to train as many as 3,000 people in a single day in an informative and interactive way.” said Erin McDonald, American Red Cross of Northeast Indiana'€™s Director of Preparedness & Safety Solutions. “This non-certified training will provide the basic skills that can help individuals respond to life-threatening emergencies. People often fear the thought of providing CPR to a stranger and especially a loved one, but being trained and knowing what to do can reduce that fear and save a life.”

During 2005 and 2006, TRAA responded to 452 cardiac arrest cases that happened outside a medical setting, according to numbers from the Emergency Medical Services Foundation here in Fort Wayne. Of those, only 17 percent of victims received bystander CPR.

“In 2007, Fort Wayne had a 33 percent save rate for cardiac arrests. That'€™s an outstanding number compared to national figures, but more people knowing how to perform hands-only CPR is one of the best ways to improve that number,” said Gary Booher, TRAA Executive Director. “Early bystander CPR, in addition to early access to 911 emergency dispatch, first responders with AED capabilities in 4 minutes and advanced life support-capable ambulance in 8 minutes are the major components necessary for greatest survivability, according to research.”

In addition to the training sessions, the American Red Cross will have a blood drive at the Public Safety Academy and the Fort Wayne Police Department will offer demonstrations including training equipment at the academy. To secure a blood donation time, preferably after training, call (800) GIVE-LIFE.

Community CPR training follows through on a campaign promise Mayor Henry made last year.

“My sincere thanks to the community partners who have worked diligently on this project since shortly after I took office this year,” Mayor Henry said. “I'€™m looking forward to be able to tell other mayors throughout this country that Fort Wayne knows how to save a life.”

To register online for the training, visit 3RCPR.org. Registration forms are available at the front desk of the City-County Building and will be sent to City Utilities customers in their bills next month. Starting Aug. 25, registration forms will be available at Fort Wayne Kroger and Scott'€™s grocery stores. Registration the day of the event will also be available.

For more information, call (260) 427-1120 or e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

To see video from the announcement, visit the City's YouTube channel.