HONOLULU (KHON2) — NFL player Damar Hamlin’s remarkable recovery from cardiac arrest puts more emphasis on learning CPR and the use of AED’s. Experts said that should help decrease the fear of using the techniques and save more lives.

CPR classes at the AED Institute continue to attract people with a growing interest in saving lives. Health officials said cardiac arrest happens to about a thousand people in Hawaii every year outside of hospitals, and the survival rate is less than 10 percent. And it’s because people are still afraid to apply CPR.

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“I would say that fear is the biggest thing there’s fear of getting sued. There’s fear that you’re going to hurt somebody and make it worse,” said Kim Williams, AED Institute Airports Manager.

She points out that cardiac arrest can happen to anyone at any time.

“No matter what causes that cardiac arrest and there’s lots of reasons for it, pumping on someone’s chest and using an AED in a timely manner, hands-down, makes a huge difference,” said Williams.

Among the lucky few who survived cardiac arrest is teacher Briana Martinez, who collapsed at a meeting three years ago.

“I was sitting in a chair they brought me to the ground they started CPR right away. There was an AED in the office I was in which was used they call 911,” said Martinez.

Williams said the first thing to do when a person collapses is to tap them to see if they respond. And if they don’t start doing chest compressions, have someone call 911 and grab the AED.

Williams points out that even if you haven’t been trained to use an AED you can still use it if you have to, it’s really a matter of just turning it on.

Once the AED is turned on it tells you to put the pads on the body. It will then prompt you to stand clear when an electric shock is applied, and when to resume chest compressions.

The idea is to keep doing this until first responders arrive. As for Martinez, she has fully recovered thanks to her co-workers who didn’t hesitate.

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“The only thing that you can do by doing CPR by using an AED, is give that person a chance at surviving, which I am grateful for every single day,” she said.