Don’t Die of Doubt, call 9-1-1.

The Trentonian (Trenton, NJ) - - OPINION -

As hos­pi­tals, com­mu­ni­ties and gov­ern­ments world­wide strug­gle to un­der­stand the COVID-19 pan­demic, data shows an alarm­ing re­duc­tion in the num­ber heart at­tacks, strokes and car­diac ar­rests be­ing re­ported as well as re­duc­tions in 9-1-1 calls and ER vis­its.

Even in the midst of COVID-19, cer­tain emer­gency heart and stroke symp­toms re­quire im­me­di­ate med­i­cal in­ter­ven­tion. In these cases, ev­ery sec­ond counts and hos­pi­tals are still the safest place to be.

Call­ing 911 at the first signs of a heart at­tack, stroke, or car­diac ar­rest could be a life­sav­ing de­ci­sion. Re­duc­ing the time be­tween symp­tom on set and med­i­cal treat­ment dras­ti­cally im­proves the chances of sur­viv­ing a car­dio­vas­cu­lar event. Emer­gency re­spon­ders have the equip­ment and train­ing to ini­ti­ate treat­ment and mon­i­tor of a pa­tient’s con­di­tion and call­ing 9-1-1 is the fastest way to get life­sav­ing treat­ment.

Home is­meant to be our safe place, but heart at­tacks and strokes don’t stay home. Don’t avoid the ER out of anx­i­ety. Don’t die of doubt. Don’t stay silent and don’t stay home.

The Amer­i­can Heart As­so­ci­a­tion mis­sion — to be a re­lent­less force for a world of health­ier, longer lives — is more im­por­tant than ever. Peo­ple with car­dio­vas­cu­lar dis­eases are more likely to be se­ri­ously im­pacted by COVID-19 than oth­ers, too. If you ex­pe­ri­ence the symp­toms of heart at­tack or stroke, call 9-1-1 im­me­di­ately. To learn more about those symp­toms, visit Heart.org/Don­tDie­ofDoubt.

— Gina Petrone Mu­molie, DNP, MBA, RN NEA-BC, Chair, Cen­tral New Jer­sey Heart Walk, Sr. VP Hos­pi­tal Ad­min­is­tra­tion, Cap­i­tal Health, Pen­ning­ton, NJ

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