Angela Creason - Journey to Washington D.C.

To my elated surprise, I was selected to represent Idaho at the 2024 Hearts on the Hill Fly-in in Washington, D.C. May 22nd – 23rd, along with many other advocates filled with passion that could move mountains. Our goal while in the nation’s capital, was to ask for sponsorship and support from our Senators and Representatives on two bills, the HEARTS act H.R. 6829 in the House of Representatives and the Access to AEDs act S.1024 in the Senate.

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Women standing outside Senator Risch office with a flag, name plague and an AED behind her.
thumbnail===https://assets.nationbuilder.com/yourethecure/pages/39957/attachments/original/1717539304/Angela_outside_Risch_cropped.jpg?1717539304
thumbnail_alt_text===Women standing outside Senator Risch office with a flag, name plague and an AED behind her.

Being the recipient of CPR and AED (Automated External Defibrillator) shocks, both which contributed to my survival from Sudden Cardiac Arrest 10 years ago, I am a staunch advocate for AED’s in our state’s schools as well as working to get better quality training of CPR in our schools (a high school graduation requirement in Idaho), for students and all school staff.

I heard many stories from both the miraculous survival side and some from the heartbreaking loss of loved ones – but each one struck a new match of burning desire to push hard to get support for these bills. The stories of loss need to transition to stories of survival, and we as a nation need make our voices heard to our members of Congress and ask for them to act in support of the passage of these bills.

On the Hill, I was able to meet with staff from Sen. Mike Crapo and Rep. Russ Fulcher’s office and met with Sen. Jim Risch and staff. I also shared my story with members from Wyoming - Sen. Cynthia Lummis and her staff as well as staff of Rep Harriet Hageman as I was paired up with an EMT advocate from Wyoming. It was a good pairing, Tony spoke on the medical side of CPR and AED importance in rural areas that both our states have, and I gave it a heartstring twist with being a survivor.

These bipartisan bills would authorize federal funding to help schools develop Cardiac Emergency Response Plans, purchase ACCESSIBLE AEDs and related equipment, and provide CPR & AED training to students, staff, and coaches. I hope this is the first of many fly-ins. I hope the information and experience I gained while in D.C. will help me be an effective advocate here, back at home.

Grateful, thankful, inspired, motivated and excited are all words I would use to describe this experience.

One more word…..please. Please learn CPR. Please look for the closest AED in your workplace, school, grocery store, restaurant, etc. For every minute an SCA victim goes without CPR and/or defibrillation, their chance of survival drops 10%.

 

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