Coronavirus CPR Guidelines:

Healthcare providers are the profession at the highest risk for contracting COVID-19. Many work in close contact with patients suspected or confirmed to have the disease. To improve their safety and limit their exposure, updates have been made to existing CPR recommendations. These include limiting personnel attending to a patient, encouraging bystander CPR, and emphasizing providing at least hands-only CPR.

First responders are advised to put on PPE before entering the scene. CPR should consist of cycles of thirty compressions and two rescue breaths. When giving rescue breaths, a bag-mask that has a tight seal and filter should be used. Alternatively, continuous chest compressions with passive oxygenation can be provided whilst wearing a protective medical mask. Mechanical CPR devices can be used for patients who meet the height and weight requirements to reduce aerosolization risk.

For adult victims, it is recommended to provide at least hands-only CPR after a cardiac arrest is known to have occurred. The healthcare provider and/or victim should wear a face mask to reduce the risk of contagion for the safety of both, as well as any none-household bystanders.

For children, chest compressions should be performed and mouth-to-mouth ventilation may be considered. Again, mask-wearing is advised for both the healthcare provider and/or victim.

What is Personal Protective Equipment?

PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) keeps you safe from blood, hazardous materials, and OPIM. PPE includes:

  • Face shields
  • CPR shields
  • Gloves
  • Goggles
  • Gowns
  • Masks

All Personal Protective Equipment promotes safety by creating a barrier between you and the infection/hazardous materials. Before arriving at the scene of the accident, you must assess the situation to determine the risks and to use the proper PPE.

PPE examples include CPR shields provide protection against exposure when performing CPR. Face shields provide splash and high impact protection, while gloves protect against exposure from skin contact with chemicals, infectious agents, cold, heat, and cutting objects. For proper protection, be sure to use the correct hand.

Goggles are designed to reduce the risk of exposure to laser radiation, chemical splashes, or flying debris. Gowns are used to prevent the penetration of infectious blood, hazardous materials, or other OPIM. Masks are used to protect the employee from airborne materials or liquid contaminating the face.