Guest Blogger: Nicole Olmstead, Senior Government Relations Director, Arizona
It's September, and most kids have headed back to school, especially here in Arizona. We teach them about eating right, getting enough sleep and studying hard. But what happens if their hearts suddenly stop at school? Is there someone on staff that knows how to do CPR? What happens if your child suddenly collapses during PE or during a sporting event?
The American Heart Association supports having every child that graduates from an Arizona school learn Hands Only CPR at some point during 7th to 12th grade. CPR is one of the most effective ways to prevent death from sudden cardiac arrest, but unfortunately 90% of all people who have sudden cardiac arrest die. The primary reason is because not enough citizens know how to perform CPR or have the confidence to perform it. Bystander CPR can increase the chances of survival by two to three times compared to having no CPR performed and waiting for paramedics.
During the upcoming legislative session, the AHA in Arizona is once again going to advocate for a graduation requirement to have Hands Only CPR taught at some point during high school. Pending successful passage, approximately 85,000 students each year will graduate from school knowing how to save a life. This will create a new generation of life-savers.