During the 2013 North Dakota session, the American Heart Association led an effort which resulted in $450,000 being set aside to cover CPR training costs for one high school grade level in every high school. The initiative, which includes both public and private schools, started through a conversation by Dr. Robert Oatfield, St. Alexius/Primecare, an AHA state advocacy committee member, with two influential Senators who served on the Senate Appropriations committee. Through this volunteer outreach, North Dakota is positioned to have a future platform that ensures every graduating student in North Dakota is trained on lifesaving skills of CPR.
While funding helps to remove any barriers for schools to offer the course, more work needs to be done. We are in the process of identifying volunteers who would be willing to go to their local high school, inform them about this great opportunity, and take steps to include the training into one of the classes required for graduation. Help support CPR in Schools by agreeing to reach out to you area high school. You will be provided with overview material, training and handout materials.
Bystander CPR can double or triple survival from cardiac arrest. Training of all students before graduation will add a 15,000 trained rescuers to North Dakota every few years - making it more likely someone will be ready to help you or a loved one.