Author page: Brian M Dotson

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While praying for Damar Hamlin, what can we learn from what happened?

As a lifetime athlete, I marvel at the smacks, smashes, blood and sweat. From my Living-room it’s entertainment. To a 24-year-old young man collapsing in front of teams, stadiums, family, and millions of us at home is traumatic. For all of us, our prayers go to Damar Hamlin and his loved ones. To watch a young man who is living his dream from childhood collapse in a near-fatal event is not what any of us wish for. As a 36-year EMS veteran, I could tell within 60 seconds that there was more than just a knee injury happening on that field. CPR was started immediately. At this point, I don’t know all of the on-scene details, but I can safely…

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RSV

CPR Class: Online vs Classroom

Online learning has made tremendous advancements in the last decade. What used to be a series of digitized articles and essays has advanced to 360-degree video lectures and even virtual demonstrations. It’s now easier than ever to attain education in areas of personal and professional interest, and excuses for not doing so are quickly running out. Many employers and accrediting will not accept a fully online CPR certification. However, there are still cases in which taking a class over the internet doesn’t fully measure up to an in-person, physical experience. You’d be hard-pressed to truly learn karate over the web without an instructor helping you maintain form, and it would be silly to accept that you could learn how to…

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DNR Tattoo

“Do Not Resuscitate” Orders…

A common question that comes up in our CPR classes concerns a hypothetical situation in which a bystander performs CPR on a victim who has a DNR (Do Not Resuscitate). In this post, we’ll discuss what DNRs are, who has them, and what (if any) concerns a non-medical professional may have about them. Disclaimer: Nothing in this article is intended to give legal advice nor should be taken as legal advice. Generally speaking, a DNR (also referred to as an “allow natural death” or a “no-code”) is a legal order indicating that a person does not want to receive cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). In some cases, it also prevents other medical interventions. The processes and status of DNR vary from state…

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wilderness

Wilderness First Aid Kit

 What Should Be In A Wilderness First Aid Kit? As a Wilderness First Aid instructor, the most common question I get is, “What do you carry in your Wilderness First Aid Kit?” My answer is always the same: “it depends.” It’s no surprise that people seek clarity around this topic more than any other in class. During a Wilderness First Aid course, folks get introduced to a variety of skills, tools, and information that help prepare them for responding to medical emergencies in remote environments. So when you put together a first aid kit, it can feel like you’re supposed to load up a full backpack of medical supplies if you want to be prepared—which understandably feels daunting and unreasonable.…

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ems

Prepare For A 911 Response

Calling 911 in an emergency is a significant event. Once the wheels are set in motion, the fire or police dept will descend on your peaceful neighborhood, prompting neighbors to peek through their curtains or stand in their yard while your privacy is exposed. If you are transported, the bill can be enormous. The situation is strange since you’ve never processed so much information in so little time… EVER!   The first thing is first: your neighbors most generally care about you and want you or your loved ones to be well. Neighbors will help you. I have seen neighbors offer to lock up a home, pet sit, babysit, and even give rides to the hospital to those who need it. Please…

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sample

SAMPLE Questions That Can Save Someone’s Life

SAMPLE Questions That Can Save Someone’s Life 11/11/2021 You probably know CPR stands for cardiopulmonary resuscitation. But, do you know how to use SAMPLE questions as an assessment tool for a patient or fellow diver who appears unwell? SAMPLE helps you remember the key questions to ask when assessing someone who may have an illness. Collecting this information can be very helpful to medical professionals that may arrive on the scene.   What are SAMPLE Questions and How Do You Use Them in an Emergency?   If you encounter someone who appears to be exhibiting signs and symptoms of a medical issue or illness, use the acronym SAMPLE to remember what questions to ask regarding their medical history and the…

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defibrillator

WHY SHOULD I PURCHASE A DEFIBRILLATOR?

WHY SHOULD I PURCHASE A DEFIBRILLATOR? January 18, 2021 Automatic external defibrillators may be found in many public places such as gyms, churches, schools, arena venues, etc. They are normally placed where the lay public (you) can easily locate them and obtain them for emergency use. AED should be applied as soon as is initiated. When I approach the topic of placing a defibrillator in their business, the issue of cost is the first thing to come up. The 1-2k price tag can seem stifling to a smaller business. Of course, this is easily offset by having peace of mind that you have now elevated your business by demonstrating good responsibility. Another item of concern is liability*. The use of…

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AED

ELEVEN REASONS WHY YOU NEED AN AED

ELEVEN REASONS WHY YOU NEED AN AED June 6, 2021   1. AEDs Save Lives Automated external defibrillators (AEDs) save lives. There isn’t a national statistic yet on how many lives are saved each year, but Altra Medical has 60 people who are alive today because of the AEDs we’ve sold. In 2008,  American Airlines celebrated 76 people being saved in the first 10 years they first put AEDs on their airplanes, with an overall survival rate of 63%. Chicago O’Hare has a survival rate of 64% when their AEDs have been used.  Some casinos report numbers as high as 70%. When bystanders provide CPR and use an AED before EMS arrives, 40% of the victims survive, which is much higher…

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Instructor

DOES YOUR INSTRUCTOR KNOW THEIR CRAFT?

DOES YOUR INSTRUCTOR KNOW THEIR CRAFT? January 11, 2021 One of the great challenges teaching in teaching CPR and First Aid is that I frequently encounter groups or students that are just used to showing up and listening to the boring class they have taken over and over. Many times students reflect that some instructors seem to have no working idea what they’re talking about. Of course, it is advantageous to be taught how to swim by a lifeguard; would you rather learn how to swim from a book? There are many reasons a person would like to be a CPR instructor of course. I have an instructor friend whose only motivation to teach CPR is that he is a…

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