Life-saving choices abound

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Statistics Canada figures state that the community of Chatham-Kent has the highest death rate from heart attacks per capita in Ontario, second highest in Canada.

That statistic alone is reason to take a long, hard look at the state of our personal health, and how ready we are to deal with a potential heart attack or stroke.

During this week, deemed Local Food Week in Ontario, we are so fortunate to live in an area where we only have to go a short distance to get farm fresh fruits and vegetables as well as beef, chicken, pork and eggs.

Yet we don’t take advantage of the opportunities to eat healthy that are all around us.

That makes the donation of defibrillators during Paramedic Week to the area and the project to make the public aware of where defibrillators are located for use in the community even more important. According to the Heart and Stroke Foundation, one person dies every seven minutes of a heart attack or stroke in Canada. But if people have access to and are trained on the defibrillators, they can save a life because getting to the person right away can make all the difference in the world.

Medavie EMS personnel and local firefighters do their best to get to priority calls like possible heart attack as quickly as possible but if the person can be treated immediately at the scene, the chances of survival go way up.

And with the incidence of heart disease in our community, making defibrillators available and training people on them and how to do CPR are more important now than ever.

Even at home, someone should be certified in CPR and it is the law in Ontario that every work place must have someone trained in CPR.

How to recognize the signs and symptoms of a heart attack or stroke is something everyone should know and that information is readily available on the Heart and Stroke website at heartandstroke.ca.

Read up on it, get certified and get healthy because the life you save one day may be your own.

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