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First, you must be prepared for a health emergency.

Learn emergency heart attack first aid, Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR). CPR training is offered free or for a nominal fee in many areas.

If you can’t afford the fee to take a CPR course, write to HSA at Heart Support of America | 6101 Stephens Hill Way, Corryton, TN, 37721. We can help arrange for free CPR training for you. This emergency first aid procedure could save your loved one’s life.

Have your emergency phone numbers close to your phone. Often health emergencies occur at night so if you have a phone in your bedroom, be sure and have the emergency numbers there as well.

Make sure you know what hospital in your area is the best at administering emergency treatment for your loved one’s illness. Just because a hospital is close to your home, it doesn’t mean they are equipped for heart emergencies.

Second, learn all you can about your loved one’s illness and be involved in their care.

Although it may be difficult to discuss your loved one’s illness, you should. It is important for both of you to be well informed. With new scientific advances occurring every day, there may be alternative treatments available with which your doctor is not familiar.

It is also important to question your doctor. Your loved one is concerned about getting well, and may be nervous and scared, so you could help by asking questions.

Most insurance carriers require a second opinion before a surgical procedure, but it is best to get a second opinion before any treatment.