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NSAM Safety Shares Expertise Through Free First-Aid, CPR Classes
U.S. Navy photo by Melinda Larson

NSAM Safety Shares Expertise Through Free First-Aid, CPR Classes

By Melinda Larson, NSAM Public Affairs

Five hours of focused training guided a group of students through the basics of responding to a health emergency during a First-Aid/Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR)/Automated External Defibrillator (AED) course presented by the Naval Support Activity (NSA) Monterey Occupational Safety and Health department, May 16.

From abdominal injuries to wound care, 12 students learned basic first-aid protocols as prescribed by the National Safety Council, designer of the three-pronged course.

“This was probably the most informative first aid/CPR class I’ve attended,” said Religious Program Specialist 1st Class Isaiah Linares. “I enjoyed the class and Adam is great at what he does.”

Linares is referring to class Instructor Adam Clapp, a credentialed California State Teacher for Public Safety, Fire and Life Safety. Through continued training, Clapp also maintains his California license as an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT). A firefighter for 15 years in military and civilian fire departments, Clapp enjoys sharing his expertise as a certified First-Aid/CPR/AED instructor through both the American Red Cross and the National Safety Council.

“I enjoy teaching the classes because it gives me the opportunity to teach what I know and provide the opportunity to share not only the material but personal experiences,” said Clapp, a Safety Specialist in the NSA Monterey’s Occupational Safety and Health department. “I think that allows for a better understanding of the material and how it can play a role in everyone’s life.”

After students watched instructional videos, there were hands-on exercises, like how to wrap a bandage around a wound, and how to respond to someone who is not breathing. With CPR “Manikins” for everyone, the students found space on the floor to practice compression rate and depth, two vitally-important components to successful CPR. 

The class concluded with an AED training session. With 46 AED machines located throughout the NPS campus, recreation and housing areas, Clapp explained the complexity of an AED’s function. 

“This device can automatically diagnose the life-threatening cardiac arrhythmias and is able to treat them through defibrillation, the application of electricity which stops the arrhythmia, allowing the heart to re-establish an effective rhythm,” Clapp said. “The machine decides if there needs to be an electrical jolt to someone’s heart so people should not be afraid to use an AED, even if you have not had training.” 

According to the Installation Program Director for Occupational Safety and Health, managing the AED Program and the provision of CPR, AED and First-Aid certification training is critical to the organization. 

“Since program development and implementation in fiscal year 2000, a total of four lives have been saved by students utilizing their CPR/AED skills taught by NSAM safety and health staff members,” said Michael Berry. “Because every second counts in terms of response, 19 additional AED’s have recently been acquired and will soon be deployed throughout the installation.”

Although Clapp accepted a transfer to Public Works, he will continue to provide CPR/First-Aid/AED training because he realizes the importance of knowing basic wound care and lifesaving skills. 

“I think it is important for everyone to learn these skills because you never know when you may find yourself in the position where CPR is needed,” Clapp said. “Whether it is a friend, a co-worker or a family member over the holidays, it is better to be prepared to help with some sort of action rather than to be someone who is waiting for help to arrive.”

The next CPR class is scheduled for July 19. Contact Holly Rose at the NSAM Occupational Safety and Health Office to sign-up and for additional details, hrose@nps.edu


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