Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin is issuing a CPR challenge to promote use of the emergency procedure that saved his life on national television.
Hamlin, 24, suffered cardiac arrest during a Jan. 2 game against the Cincinnati Bengals, moments after being tackled hard in the chest.
A month later, Hamlin is teaming up with the American Heart Association (AHA) for his “3 For Heart CPR Challenge,” asking people to learn hands-only CPR and then spread the word to others.
“It's going to be an amazing opportunity to impact and educate millions of people on the importance of CPR. It literally saved my life," Hamlin said in an AHA news release.
The challenge has three steps:
To kick off the challenge, Hamlin tagged three prominent figures he called the “G.O.A.T.s” (Greatest of All Time) -- LeBron James, Tom Brady and Michelle Obama.
“You’ve all been challenged. And, one more thing, make sure you share your videos on all socials and tag me and have your hearts up,” Hamlin said in a video shared on Twitter.
Hamlin has not gone into detail about his medical condition during recent social media posts and videos.
Two weeks ago, Hamlin attended the Bills’ divisional round playoff game against the Bengals.
CPR can double or triple a cardiac arrest victim’s chance of survival if it’s performed immediately after a person’s heart stops beating, the AHA said.
Hands-only CPR is a simplified version in which a person only performs chest compressions upon the patient until help arrives.
“The world watched in fear when Damar collapsed during that game,” said Nancy Brown, chief executive officer of the American Heart Association. “But if you follow his advice, you can become a lifesaver in three steps, and you’ll know what to do in the event an adult or teen suddenly collapses in your presence.
“Because most cardiac arrests that happen outside of a hospital occur in the home, the life you save will most likely be a loved one,” Brown said in the release.
The American Heart Association has more about hands-only CPR.
SOURCE: American Heart Association, news release, Feb. 1, 2023