Man who spends summers in Northwoods invents first-of-its-kind CPR deviceSubmitted: 07/21/2014
Story By Lauren Stephenson

EAGLE RIVER - One in four Americans will need to perform CPR on someone. But 70% of those people feel helpless because they don't know what to do, according to the American Heart Association. Joe Hanson, a man who spends his summers in Eagle River, spent more than 45 years in the cardiovascular medical device industry. Over time he saw devices improve. But one thing that didn't was the survival rate of people who suffer from sudden cardiac arrest.

"2005, 2010 area, the American Heart Association and others started to look at the reason for that low survivability. And what they found was that people really hesitated to do CPR," Hanson explained.

He took a hands-only CPR class. Hands-only CPR has been recommended by the American Heart Association since 2008.

"My hands and wrists don't bend backwards very well to a 90-degree angle which you're required to do and then put your body weight on top of that, pressure to do hands-only," Hanson said. "So we started to work on the device that would make it a little bit easier, a little bit more efficient to perform hands-only."

It took three years to develop what Hanson calls the CPR RsQ Assist. It became available in April.

"The first device was a combination of a $1.79 plunger from Home Depot, a broom handle and a couple of handle bars and very simple, sort of efficient," said Hanson.

The CPR RsQ Assist is the first FDA-approved hands-only CPR device for clinical use. It guides the user through 100 chest compressions per minute. That's the right amount to give the heart a chance to refill with blood to be pumped into the brain.

"The goal is to deliver a neurologically intact patient to the emergency room. And if they can do that, the hospital can take over and really can do wonders for that victim," Hanson explained.

Fewer than 8% of people who suffer from cardiac arrest outside a hospital survive. But CPR can double or triple a victim's chance of survival, according to the American Heart Association.

"We're buying a piece of time. If we can do something meaningful with these patients within the first couple, 2-3 minutes, it really does make a large difference," Hanson said.

He hopes the CPR RsQ Assist becomes a standard household and business item, like a fire extinguisher and smoke alarm.

Hanson says people all across the country have already bought the device. Some paramedics and even a sheriff's department in Florida will keep the CPR RsQ Assist in their vehicles.

For more information on the device and to buy it, call 1-877-277-7998 or visit the website by clicking the link below.

Related Weblinks:
CPR RsQ Assist Website

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Fall fire safety tipsSubmitted: 10/07/2015

RHINELANDER - Some people like to cozy up next to a fireplace on fall nights, but finding cost-effective ways to stay warm can be risky.

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What We're Working OnSubmitted: 10/07/2015

- The Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra made its nearly annual stop in Rhinelander Wednesday morning. The orchestra played 200-year-old music for grade school children, but the conductor says Beethoven connects people in ways no other music can. Hear some of the show from him tonight at 5.

We'll have the details on this story and more tonight on Newswatch 12 - news from where you live.

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RHINELANDER - When you think of fundraisers, usually you think of selling candy or gift wrap, but one elementary school is getting more creative with the way they fundraise.

Pelican Elementary School in Rhinelander started their first ever 'Strut for Fund' fun run Wednesday.

Student's family and friends pledge money based on how many laps the kids run around the playground.

The school then gets to use that money.

Organizers say the support is overwhelming in its first year.

"We're really excited, having this be our first year with the amount of support we're seeing with parents who have shown up, and with the enthusiasm in the kids," says Strut for Fund Coordinator Katie Lindner. "I just wanted to say thank you to everyone for all that they're doing to make this a success."

Students got an added treat to help encourage them.

The Hodag came out to help the kids get fired up.

"We had a pep rally [Tuesday]…and the kids were up out of their seats, yelling and cheering," says Lindner. "The Hodag was dancing with them, so they get really excited about it. I had one little boy that came up to me this morning and said 'This is the best day ever,' and was so excited."

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The Wisconsin State Journal reports (http://bit.ly/1jdn78F ) the Supreme Court refused to take case on Monday with no comment. The case was among about 1,600 other cases the court declined to take up.

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MERRILL - The Merrill Police Department runs on the motto: "Serving Merrill With Pride." Tuesday, the people of Merrill returned the favor.

Every penny of the Friendship House Restaurant's proceeds from open to close went to the K-9 unit.

Eros, the German Shepherd, and his handler, Officer Matt Drabek, spent Tuesday afternoon at the restaurant along Highway 51 thanking customers and staff.

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