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People of color are far less likely to receive CPR from bystanders, new study finds

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Most CPR training done in the United States is conducted in white communities, according to Dr. Chan.

During an emergent cardiac event, receiving cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) increases the likeliness of survival. However, a study by a Saint Luke's cardiologist found that people of color are far less likely to receive CPR from bystanders than white people.

A Kansas City cardiologist has co-authored a study in the New England Journal of Medicine finding that Black and Hispanic patients of cardiac arrest are significantly less likely to receive CPR from bystanders than white patients.

Dr. Paul Chan, at St. Luke's Mid America Heart Institute in Kansas City, found that Black and Hispanic individuals are 37% less likely to receive CPR in public. They’re also 26% less likely to receive CPR in their homes.

Chan told KCUR’s Up To Date that the problem is the culmination of structural barriers in minority health care. The majority of CPR training is conducted in white communities, and the cost to get trained is often too expensive.

“It costs about 100 to $200 to do the CPR training, and for many individuals in low income communities, which happen to lean more Black and Hispanic, that's a barrier," Chan says.

Chan says he is working to connect with leaders in the Kansas City metro area to make CPR training more accessible in minority communities.

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When I host Up To Date each morning at 9 a.m., my aim is to engage the community in conversations about the Kansas City area’s challenges, hopes and opportunities. I try to ask the questions that listeners want answered about the day’s most pressing issues and provide a place for residents to engage directly with newsmakers. My email is steve@kcur.org.
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Elizabeth Ruiz is a freelance producer for KCUR’s Up To Date. Contact her at elizabeth@kcur.org or on Twitter at @er_bentley_ruiz
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