Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation Urges Pennsylvania Legislature to Require CPR Training Before High School Graduation

The Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation urges patients, families and other advocates to submit testimonials in support of the legislation.

PITTSBURGH, PA--The Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation, a national nonprofit organization based in Pittsburgh, PA, has expressed its support for House Bill 921 (Stephen Barrar, R-Delaware), legislation that has been referred to the House Education Committee led by Rep. Dave Hickernell, Chair, and Rep. James Roebuck, Democratic Chair. The legislation calls for CPR/AED (automated external defibrillator) education for high school students before graduation. The American Heart Association, American College of Cardiology, American Red Cross and other organizations also support the legislation.

Sudden cardiac arrest is the third leading cause of death in the U.S. More than 350,000 people suffer sudden cardiac arrest outside hospitals every year, including 7,000 young people. Unfortunately, the chances of survival are only about 10 percent. However, survival rates can be as high as 50 percent if bystanders provide CPR and use AEDs before EMS arrives at the scene. Incidence and survival rates in Pennsylvania reflect the national average.

According to the Foundation, House Bill 921 is a common-sense solution to prepare students with an important life skill. The legislation will not place a costly mandate on schools. Rather, it will define CPR in the existing academic standards as a hands-only training based on the most current and evidenced-based guidelines. In addition, the bill will provide schools with flexibility to implement CPR training in a way that makes sense for them, such as incorporating it into a current course, through community training, or by any other means.

“Thirty-seven other states and the District of Columbia have enacted similar legislation. It’s time for Pennsylvania to join the national movement to create a new generation of lifesavers,” said Mary Newman, Foundation president. “There is no doubt House Bill 921 will strengthen community safety and help save lives.”

SCA Foundation Appeals to PA Residents to Submit Testimonials in Support of PA HB 921

The Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation is seeking testimonials in support of PA HB 921. Pennsylvania residents and other interested parties are urged to send a brief testimonial (e.g., one paragraph) to info [at] sca-aware [dot] org describing why this legislation is important. The testimonials will be shared with the PA House Education Committee. Testimonials may also be sent directly to The Honorable Dhickern [at] pahousegop [dot] com (subject: Support%20for%20PA%20HB%20921) (Dave Hickernell), Chair, House Education Committee, 43-A East Wing, Harrisburg, PA 17120-2098.

See Learning from Iowa's Experience.

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Mission & Vision

The mission of the Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) Foundation is to prevent death and disability from sudden cardiac arrest. The vision of the SCA Foundation is to increase awareness about sudden cardiac arrest and influence attitudinal and behavioral changes that will reduce mortality and morbidity from SCA.

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