Newton, NC – Many people are unprepared to address an incident of sudden cardiac distress. To know how to provide assistance in case of a medical emergency, the Catawba County Library is hosting a session about two potentially life-saving techniques on Wednesday, August 21 at 3 pm at the Sherrills Ford-Terrell Branch Library.

The class will be taught by Catawba County Emergency Medical Services staff and will focus on using new automated external defibrillators (AEDs), which the County has placed at all library locations. These machines use simple audio and visual commands and offer guided directions so that any bystander can help a person experiencing cardiac distress. The machine automatically diagnoses and treats with electricity, but only if it’s needed.

Participants will learn how to use an AED first-hand, which is helpful since the equipment is often available at public locations like churches, malls, and county buildings. The machine is easy to operate when circumstances require a quick response, and having advance familiarity can provide an added measure of comfort when someone needs to act immediately.

The class will also teach hands-only CPR, which is the preferred technique for the general public and doesn’t include an artificial breath component. The class does not provide CPR certification but is intended to help people understand what can be done in an emergency situation.

For more information about Catawba County Libraries, visit, call 828.465.8664, email [email protected], or visit them on Facebook.