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Training session educates Mesa university in new approach to treating cardiac arrest

ATSU learns new CPR procedures from University of Arizona

MESA, Ariz. (May 9, 2006 ) – A.T. Still University (ATSU) in Mesa, home of the Arizona School of Health Sciences and the Arizona School of Dentistry & Oral Health, has become one of the nation’s pre-eminent health sciences universities and known for its commitment to public health. Recently, ATSU hosted a training session from the University of Arizona’s Sarver Heart Center about a new approach in aiding victims of cardiac arrest.

According to a recent study co-authored by Sarver Heart Center Director Gordon A. Ewy, M.D., survival rates following the most common form of cardiac arrest increased three-fold when a new form of CPR is applied.

Under the new approach, first responders begin fast; forceful chest compressions begin before waiting for a defibrillator to analyze the patient’s heart rhythm.

Researchers at the Sarver Heart Center have developed a simplified method of bystander CPR, which greatly increases willingness to perform CPR. “The new approach is simpler and does not involve mouth-to-mouth breathing,” said Dr. Ewy. “In laboratory experiments we found the most important factor of survival is to keep blood moving through the body by continuous chest compressions.” When complimented with the use of an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) in the critical first five minutes after a cardiac arrest, survival rates of the victim doubled, according to published studies.

“A.T. Still University aspires to become a community resource for health professionals, health information, and health professions educators,” says Craig Phelps, D.O., FAOASM, provost of A.T. Still University’s Mesa campus. “Being able to partner with the Sarver Heart Center to train our faculty and staff supports that vision.”

ATSU-Mesa is actively concerned about public health issues and its faculty and students participate to find solutions on statewide and national levels. In response to the statewide shortage of physicians, the university is completing its design on a proposed medical school to open Fall 2007 that will implement a partnership and commitment between future doctors and community/public health issues. The relationship between the university and community health centers across the nation is a unique demonstration how the medical education can work with public health entities for the benefit of the patient and the nation’s healthcare system overall.


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