‘We’re all humans, we need to help’: Black, Hispanic adults less likely to receive CPR

As heat rises, health officials urge adults to act fast. But if CPR is needed, Black or Hispanic adults are less likely to receive it.

SAN ANTONIO – Diamond Garza said CPR can be as simple as singing the song “Stayin’ Alive” by the Bee Gees.

“There’s a need for people to know what to do,” Garza, a CPR instructor at Life Enrichment and Safety Institute, said.

CPR is Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation, or in more simple terms, a lifesaving procedure to perform when someone’s heart stops beating.

The American Heart Association reported that immediate CPR can double or triple the chances of someone surviving cardiac arrest. But the AHA also reports Black and Hispanic Americans are 26% less likely than white Americans to receive CPR from a bystander and 41% less likely to receive CPR if they’re experiencing cardiac arrest in public.

Garza said this statistic comes as no surprise to her, but why this statistic still stands could come from many reasons.

“Is it because of lack of training?” Garza said. “Is it because they don’t want to get out there? Is it because people are scared of touching? That is something that we have to think about.”

Brenda Delgado, an instructor at Help-A-Heart CPR, said her classes are often majority white, and she said changing this statistic comes down to education and accessibility.

“The group that’s more trained, that’s more likely to take a class, then part of your responsibility as a CPR provider is to try and get that word out,” Delgado said.

Delgado said a CPR class often costs around $65 and takes about three hours to complete. She said this is often a barrier for families to get trained.

She recommends that if accessibility is an issue for you or your family to getting CPR certification, that reading the American Heart Association or the American Red Cross both provide services to help familiarize people with CPR without having to pay for full training.

The Miss Tristan Foundation in San Antonio also offers free CPR education. Click here to schedule a class.

Garza said any training is good training.

“We’re all humans. We need help,” Garza said. “Giving CPR doesn’t always mean we’re going to have a positive outcome, but it gives this person a chance of survival.”

About the Author:

Avery Everett is a news reporter and multimedia journalist at KSAT 12 News. Avery is a Philadelphia native. If she’s not at the station, she’s either on a hiking or biking trail. A lover of charcuterie boards and chocolate chip cookies, Avery’s also looking forward to eating her way through San Antonio, one taco shop at a time!