Utah has become the 18th state to require high school students to take CPR training, adding to the more than one million graduates Nationwide who will be equipped with this lifesaving skill every year.
Gov. Gary Herbert signed legislation into law in April that allocated $200,000 a year for hands-on CPR and automated external defibrillator training in high schools. A new provision of the legislation, formalized this month, requires students to receive CPR and AED training in 10th grade health class beginning in the 2014-2015 school year. That means nearly 35,000 sophomores will learn CPR techniques every year.
The American Heart Association encouraged lawmakers to include the training requirement, and worked closely with the Utah Department of Health, the State Office of Education, and the Utah Parent Teachers Association to make this happen.
Requiring CPR and automated external defibrillator training in high school is important. A sudden cardiac arrest may strike at any time and bystander CPR can double or triple survival rates from cardiac arrest. Of the roughly 424,000 Americans who have a cardiac arrest outside of the hospital each year, only 40 percent get CPR from a bystander and only about 10 percent of these victims survive the event.
Utah joins 17 other states with CPR graduation laws: Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Louisiana, Maryland, Minnesota, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia and Washington.
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