Bystanders use defibrillator to resuscitate man in cardiac arrest

The machine delivered one shock, restoring the man's heartbeat, and he began to breathe on his own.

Ottawa Citizen 2 minute read September 6, 2021

Ottawa paramedics on Friday thanked a group of bystanders whose quick actions saved the life of a man who collapsed during a soccer game.

At the outdoor field of the Richcraft Recreation Complex-Kanata just after 9 p.m. Thursday, a man in his mid-50s suddenly collapsed, the Ottawa Paramedic Service wrote in a media release. He was not breathing and showed no signs of life.

Players, bystanders and lifeguards working at the facility began cardio-pulmonary resuscitation and applied the league’s Automated External Defibrillator to the man’s chest. The machine delivered one shock, restoring the man’s heartbeat, and he began to breathe on his own.

Paramedics later arrived and cared for the patient while he was transported to hospital.

“This rapid emergency response by bystanders and facility staff gave him the best chance for life,” the OPS wrote. “We’d like to thank all bystanders involved who quickly identified a medical emergency and responded by calling 9-1-1, obtaining the nearest AED/PAD (Public Access Defibrillator) and starting CPR. This highlights the importance of obtaining and maintaining CPR and AED certification while having a positive impact when community members respond to someone in need.”

The service encouraged all members of the public to become trained in CPR and AED use. “These are key factors in the Chain of Survival for Sudden Cardiac Arrest. However, if you witness a medical emergency and are not trained in CPR or AED use, our Ambulance Communications Officers are trained to provide Over-the-Phone CPR instructions as well as help you locate and use the nearest AED/PAD,” the OPS wrote.

The service offers first aid and CPR courses, links for which can be found on the city website.