Women who fall over with a heart attack may be left unaided – as men are too afraid to give CPR in case they are accused of sexual assault.
Researchers from the University of Colorado surveyed people on their attitudes in the wake of the #MeToo movement.
Interviewees said (among other things) that they feared being accused of inappropriate touching or sexual assault, the researchers found.
Men were twice as likely to cite this fear as a reason for not administering CPR, the researchers found.
Study lead author Sarah Perman of the University of Colorado School of Medicine in Denver, said: ‘The consequences of all of these major themes is that women will potentially receive no CPR or delays in initiation of CPR.
‘While these are actual fears the public holds, it is important to realise that CPR is lifesaving and should be rendered to collapsed individuals regardless of gender, race or ethnicity.’
Administering CPR at the moment of a heart attack roughly triples a person’s chances of surviving, the researchers said.