There are approximately 2,000 sudden cardiac arrests every year in the city of Toronto. Many of them happen in public places. If you saw someone suffering a sudden cardiac arrest, would you know what to do?

Learning first aid, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), and how to use an automated external defibrillator (AED) will give you the skills you need to help a paramedic save a life in a medical emergency.

Toronto Paramedic Services’ Safe City program maintains over 1,500 AEDs in public places like TTC subway stations, police stations, community centres, rinks, pools, and some schools. Knowing what to do ahead of the medical emergency will allow you to contribute to saving a life.

Several bystanders a year step forward to help save a life in three easy steps:

  1. Call 9‑1‑1 for the paramedics.
  2. Start CPR:
    • Push hard and fast on the person’s chest to the beat of the song “Stayin’ Alive” (100–125 beats per minute)
  3. In a public place, ask for the AED (or public access defibrillator). Follow the instructions, administer a life-saving shock if necessary.

Taking a Toronto Paramedic Services CPR/First Aid course will help you to help someone in a medical emergency.

Toronto Paramedic Services Safe City Program: 416-392-9833, or email: