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François Lemieux
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Many residents take a memory-refreshing course on infant resuscitation

Pointe Claire CPR coordinator Marie-Josée Thivierge teaches resident Lauren Houghton infant resuscitation at the Valois Tennis Club this weekend. The Pointe Claire CPR held two crash course sessions recently: one on July 21 and the other one on July 23. Photo by Rob Amyot.

Following the numerous tragic drownings that hit Quebec since the beginning of summer, the Pointe Claire CPR offered a 30-minute workshop on children and infant resuscitation on July 21 and 23 at the Valois Tennis Club.

Many people showed up for the 30-minute class during which Pointe Claire CPR coordinator Marie-Josée Thivierge showed them the ropes of infant, baby and adult resuscitation from the initial check for breathing to the chest compressions and rescue breaths as well as choking scenarios and ways to cope with those.

This took place on July 21 morning starting at 9 a.m. with another session on July 23 starting at 5 p.m. Thivierge has been with the coordinator of the program since 2009 and thinks people often need this memory-refresher to improve their chances of saving someone in a life and death situation.

“People need to be a little more alert to how to react in a situation like that. When the adrenaline comes, you can’t think straight. People forget, they say they know how to do it but then forget when a situation occurs. Taking a course like this refreshes their memory and also enables them to practice the techniques: this is how you learn naturally. Thus, when the adrenaline comes during an intervention, the brain remembers and one is able to react better,” she said.

Lauren Houghton, 31 years old from Pointe Claire was the first one to go through the crash course on Saturday morning. She has two boys, one aged 10 months and the other almost three years old. She says she was influenced by the recent cases of children drownings in Quebec this summer to come and take this course.

“I came here mostly because we don’t have a pool ourselves but you hear of kids drowning in neighbours’ pools so it’s definitely a worthwhile course because you don’t necessarily know that people have their gates properly closed. Even though I’ve done CPR in the past, I was certified, this was specific to infants so in light of the recent incidents it was perfectly appropriate. It’s unfortunate that it’s not mandatory,” she said.

Organizations: Valois Tennis Club

Geographic location: Quebec, Pointe Claire

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