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Time is of the essence when cardiac arrest strikes, and experts say you shouldn’t wait for paramedics to get there to offer help. Bystanders who perform CPR improve survival rates and reduce the risk of brain damage that can result from cardiac arrest, a new study found. Previous research has shown that the new hands-only CPR, which doesn’t involve mouth to mouth, is the best technique for bystanders. Keep pumping until help arrives.

This appears in the August 03, 2015 issue of TIME.

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