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Local coaches learn fine points of first aid

June 25, 2001|By TIM YANNI, Sports Writer

El Centro Regional Medical Center sponsored a cardiopulmonary resuscitation and first aid class Saturday and athletic coaches of all levels were invited to participate free of charge.

Emphasis was placed on the prevention of injuries and accidents along with handling of emergencies, said Judy Cruz, the registered nurse who headed the class.

Those in attendance included Little League baseball coaches, elementary and middle school level coaches and cheerleading advisers.

Topics covered other than CPR and first aid included taping and wrapping of injuries and taping for support, injury prevention and dehydration.

"They're better prepared to deal with crises, mishaps or accidents if they occur," Cruz said of the 23 adults who took advantage of the program.


She added a lot of emphasis is spent on heat-related conditions such as dehydration, which can be common in the warm climate of Imperial County.

"In spite of all of your efforts to prevent injuries, injuries will happen," Cruz said as she explained why such a clinic is important.

She said it is encouraged that those participating in sporting activities wear proper equipment and protective gear to keep injuries at a minimum.

She said if her children were to participate in athletic activities, she "would definitely feel more comfortable if one of these folks were the coach."

She added those in attendance should be commended for giving up a Saturday to participate in the eight-hour affair.

"These people are here because they want to be here and learn something," Cruz said.

She mentioned the importance of keeping up to date with CPR certification.

"How many of us really do CPR in two years?" she asked, referring to why it is necessary to keep the information fresh in mind. "These people will be able to walk up and know what to do."

Cedric Ceseña, an instructor at the clinic, said he was pleased with the turnout.

He agreed with Cruz that those in attendance were given a great deal of important information.

"They have the knowledge of how to react when they are presented with an emergency," Ceseña said. "Generally I believe that the knowledge will remain with them."

Ceseña said sometimes accidents are unavoidable, but being properly prepared can make a big difference.

"There will be some sort of injury or medical condition that will occur," Ceseña said. "If they make a difference in one person, that's enough."

Cruz said Wal-Mart, Big 5, Costco and Pic 'n Save helped contribute prizes that were raffled to participants at the end of the class.

El Centro Regional conducts CPR and first aid classes throughout the year and generally charges $25 per participant. Saturday's clinic was free because of the importance of coaches having knowledge of first aid and CPR.

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