Black Cardiac Arrest Victims Receive CPR Less

Tyeese Gaines, The Grio, May 11, 2012

Black cardiac arrest victims whose hearts stop outside of the hospital are less likely to receive CPR or shocks to the heart from bystanders, according to new research presented today.

Previous studies have shown that blacks are more likely to go into cardiac arrest than whites. Yet, in this study of nearly 4,000 Philadelphians, and other studies in the past, blacks still receive CPR and shocks less often.

Even among whites, only one-third received bystander CPR in the data released today. But, blacks, on the other hand, received CPR or shocks 28.7 percent of the time.

As far back as 1994, a study out of Memphis reported an even lower bystander CPR rate among blacks—less than 10 percent—compared to 20 percent among whites.

The reasons why this continues to happen is currently unknown.

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