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CPR Kiosk Technology Debuts in Iowa

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The latest CPR training kiosk was installed at Jordan Creek Town Center in West Des Moines this week. (AHA)
The latest CPR training kiosk was installed at Jordan Creek Town Center in West Des Moines this week. (AHA)
 By Mike Moen - Producer, Contact
January 30, 2020

WEST DES MOINES, Iowa -- Since 2016, more than 30 CPR kiosks, which teach people more about the life-saving skill, have been set up in several U.S. cities.

This week, the technology was brought to Iowa.

The American Heart Association, in coordination with Mercy College of Health Sciences, unveiled the kiosk at a shopping mall in West Des Moines.

Wesley Franklin, community impact director for American Heart Association in Iowa, says a lot of people can be intimidated when it comes to learning CPR.

But he says this device is user friendly and can help translate the skill of hands-only CPR fairly quickly.

"We want to empower people to take action," he stresses. "So, when somebody does experience a cardiac arrest, we want (bystanders) to be equipped, be the help."

A person who uses the kiosk won't be certified in CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation), but Franklin says having more people test it out can be beneficial in life-or-death moments.

Each kiosk has an instructional video, followed by a practice session and a 30 second test. The training session takes about five minutes.

Franklin says, in the future, the American Heart Association hopes to set up kiosks in rural parts of the state.

Butch Gibbs, a heart attack survivor from south central Iowa, says his family's quick thinking and know how was a big help in his situation.

"I suffered a cardiac arrest, my wife started CPR right immediately, and my daughter called 911," he relates. "We're 20 miles away from an ambulance."

Fortunately, first responders arrived moments later to use automated external defibrillator (AED) technology to help keep Gibbs alive until he could be transported.

Gibbs says if it wasn't for his family and those first responders, he wouldn't be here today to encourage others to take the step to learn CPR skills like the ones offered by the kiosks.

Disclosure: American Heart Association of Iowa contributes to our fund for reporting on Health Issues, Hunger/Food/Nutrition, Smoking Prevention, Women's Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.
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