Media Release

November 6, 2012

Every second counts during a heart emergency

York Region challenges residents to learn CPR this November
You’re dining at a local restaurant and notice someone suddenly collapse to the ground. What would you do? For many, their first reaction is to panic, wasting precious time that could be used to call 9-1-1 for help and perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).
In recognition of CPR month this November, The Regional Municipality of York Emergency Medical Services (EMS) encourages residents to recognize signs of a medical emergency, learn CPR and know when to call 9-1-1.
Heart attack or sudden cardiac arrest? Do you know the difference?
These conditions may sound the same but are in fact different. Recognizing the signs of each condition can help you determine the best way to help.
A heart attack happens when arteries in the heart become blocked and blood flow is restricted. Symptoms may include mild or severe chest pain, lasting more than a few minutes, as well as upper body discomfort and nausea. A person does not have to be unconscious to be having a heart attack. If you see someone having a heart attack, call 9-1-1 immediately.
Sudden cardiac arrest occurs when the heart stops beating and a person becomes unresponsive. Call 9-1-1 immediately, start CPR and use an Automated External Defibrillator if available.
CPR basics
In the case of sudden cardiac arrest, seconds count and performing CPR immediately can increase the person’s chance of survival. According to the Heart and Stroke Foundation, for every minute that passes without CPR a person's chance of survival drops by approximately 10 per cent. 
CPR is a life-saving procedure involving chest compressions (pressing down on the chest) and artificial respirations (rescue breathing). It has the power to restore blood flow to someone suffering from a sudden cardiac arrest and keep them alive until paramedics or emergency service personnel arrive.
Learning CPR is easy and inexpensive. A few hours of your time could save someone's life. Contact an accredited CPR agency to find out about courses in your area.
For more information on CPR month, visit the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada at 
For more information on The Regional Municipality of York Emergency Medical Services (EMS) visit 
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Media Contact: Lisa Sposito, Community and Health Services, The Regional Municipality of York
905-830-4444 or 1-877-464-9675, ext. 4106  After-Hours Cell: 905-955-2533  lisa.sposito@yor

Founded in 1971, The Regional Municipality of York is made up of nine municipalities
and provides services to more than one million residents, 29,000 businesses and 495,000 employees.

 For more information visit us at Follow us on : York Region   @YorkRegionGovt  
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