ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — While save rates for cardiac arrest have decreased by 4% on a national level, they’re increasing steadily on a local level.

That’s the rate at which someone walks out of a hospital alive, after going into cardiac arrest.

“4% is a big deal when you are looking at an overall 9% national save rate, so looking at small percentage to begin with, 4% is huge,” said Andrew Perez, Senior Operation Supervisor with Rochester AMR.

“The national save rate is 9% and locally it’s 12.3% here, so we are seeing an increase of 3.3% locally, I think it’s due to our training here, size of city, how good our hospitals are.”

Experts with Rochester AMR say while we’re seeing a steady increase locally in save rates, the rate for bystander CPR is down compared to the rest of the nation. And with a better bystander rate, comes an even better save rate.

Perez says throughout the pandemic, bystanders aren’t taking action as much when someone suffers cardiac arrest.

Each one of us could fall into a bystander role someday. At the grocery store or walking down the street.

Perez says It doesn’t have to be mouth to mouth, it can just be hands on, so you don’t have to fear COVID transmission.

The more people realize this crucial lifesaving role they have, the more will survive.

“If our discharge rates are better than the rest of the nation, if we’re able to have bystanders get us up to the national bystander average, we would see a lot more of our loved ones walk out of the hospital. Not only walk out but be fully functioning,” said Perez.

Anyone can perform hands-on CPR, as long as they have enough body mass to push a chest down two inches, and keep doing that at a steady rate to the tune ‘Stayin’ Alive’ until help arrives.

Perez says hands-on CPR is crucial in the first 8 to 10 minutes of cardiac arrest. Those movements on the chest will pump blood to important organs, like the brain.