CPR in Schools – Join the Movement!

GENERATION LIFESAVERS: Lawmakers in Washington, Texas and Arizona are working to make CPR training mandatory for high school graduation. Seven states have already passed legislation. You can pledge your support to make all students in America CPR Smart by clicking on the link below and joining our movement to create the next generation of lifesavers!


Happy Heart Month – Show Your Support!

Today is the day! It’s the 10th Annual National Wear Red Day. We hope you are all donning red today whether it is a dress, shirt, tie, scarf, shoes or an AHA Red Dress pin. 

Today kicks off the first day of American Heart Month. For 10 years, women have been fighting heart disease individually and together as part of the Go Red For Women movement. More than 627,000 women’s lives have been saved, and 330 fewer women are dying per day. But the fight is far from over. 

Heart disease is still our No. 1 killer – it affects more women than men and is more deadly than all forms of cancer combined. But the strength of mothers, sisters, daughters and friends fighting side by side is more powerful than any killer. I show my support in honor of the women I love, and I hope you’ll join me! Visit www.heart.org for more information and tools to help you spread the word.

The “Costco Connection” to Hands-Only CPR

“Out for a 10-mile run on a beautiful Florida day, 52-year-old Costco member Tom Maimone collapsed at mile nine in a neighbor’s driveway. Luckily, Tom Elowson, also a Costco member, was driving by when it happened. Immediately, Elowson jumped into action and started chest compressions while humming the Bee Gees’ “Stayin’ Alive” (to maintain the correct pace) as a neighbor called 911. “I had never had any formal CPR training,” says Elowson, who had seen the Today show’s Matt Lauer demonstrate Hands-Only CPR and remembered it.”

Read more about the lifesaving difference Hands-Only CPR made for Tom Maimone in the February issue of Costco Connection, a monthly magazine distributed to 8.5 million Costco store members worldwide. Thank you, Costco, for helping AHA spread the word about the importance of taking action with two simple steps to save a life!


“Annie’s” a “Smooth Criminal!”

Did you know that the line, “Annie are you OK?” in Michael Jackson’s hit, “Smooth Criminal” was inspired by the standard name given to CPR demonstration manikins?

Jackson had been CPR trained and picked up “Annie are you OK?” after learning to first check the victim for responsiveness.

Check out the clip below from the ABC special, “BAD25,” celebrating the 25th anniversary edition reissue of Jackson’s seventh studio album, “Bad:” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_4mUH_TwsEE&feature=plcp.


“Rules of Hands-Only CPR”

I’m excited to announce that, in coordination with Sudden Cardiac Awareness Month, AHA has launched a new web-based video, “Rules of Hands-Only CPR, featuring the cast of the CBS hit series “Rules of Engagement!”

Cast members of the show, Adhir Kalyan, Bianca Kajlich, Megyn Price, Oliver Hudson and Patrick Warburton, star in the AHA’s new Hands-Only CPR video, which you can see here. “Rules of Hands-Only CPR” imagines a casual dinner conversation between two couples as they discuss the reasons for learning Hands-Only CPR. Newly engaged sweethearts, Adam & Jennifer (Oliver Hudson, Bianca Kajlich) assist their enthusiastic friend Audrey (Megyn Price) in teaching her macho husband, Jeff (Patrick Warburton), the simple steps to save a life.  Just as the scene is coming to a close, Timmy (Adhir Kalyan) bursts in in his finest white disco suit.

We hope you will use this new Hands-Only video asset to continue raising awareness of Sudden Cardiac Arrest Awareness Month (October) and the AHA’s 2012 Hands-Only CPR campaign.


Hands-Only CPR Mobile Tour Discos Down the West Coast

Disco fever was high in San Francisco

The second leg of the AHA’s Hands-Only CPR Mobile Tour kicked off last week in Sacramento with stops at the State Capitol Building, the Department of Health Care Services and the Wells Fargo corporate headquarters, where we trained more than 800 people how to perform the simple steps of Hands-Only CPR following the beat of “Stayin’ Alive.” In the state capital, the tour celebrated our biggest event to date, with over 700 trained at the Department of Health Care Services alone!

 Before rolling south into San Francisco, we visited the Hewitt Packard headquarters in Palo Alto, where we trained nearly 400 employees. The day featured important survivor stories from Marcia Mills and Ken Byk and strong support from the Palo Alto Fire Department.

In San Francisco’s Justin Herman Plaza, we held two sessions, training more than 130 people. We enjoyed an enthusiastic crowd and amazing support from the San Francisco Fire Department and American Medical Response. Fire Chief Joanne Hayes-White and Fire Medical Director Dr. Clement Yeh addressed the crowd, as did survivor Ken Byk and AMR’s Mike Padro, one of Ken’s rescuers (Ken and Mike met for the first time today!). Check out this excellent clip from the CBS affiliate, KPIX, to see Dr. Kim Mulvihill’s coverage of the event, as well as her disco moves!  http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/video/7766516-healthwatch-disco-rhythm-key-in-effective-cpr/

 After stops at Oracle’s headquarters and the Richmond Civic Center tomorrow, we’ll make our way to Los Angeles and San Diego. We’ll continue to provide you updates along the way as we show the Golden State our disco moves, including how to keep “Stayin’ Alive” with Hands-Only CPR!

MLB Umpire Jim Joyce Follows the Beat of “Stayin’ Alive” to Save a Woman’s Life

 I wanted to share with you an incredible story that shows how the message of the AHA’s Hands-Only CPR campaign is helping save lives. In late August, Major League Baseball umpire Jim Joyce used CPR to rescue a woman who’d suffered cardiac arrest at an Arizona Diamondbacks game. Joyce said that as he administered these lifesaving steps, he sang the song that is the centerpiece of our Hands-Only campaign, “Stayin’ Alive.” The AHA recommends this Bee Gees hit because its tempo – at about 100 beats per minute – is an ideal pace for providing chest compressions. Read more about this story of survival at the MLB website!

AHA and Laerdal Extend Their Joint Commitment To Community CPR

This July, as we enter into our seventh year of the Laerdal Medical/AHA Strategic Alliance, it is my great pleasure to announce that Laerdal has awarded the AHA an additional $1.85 million grant to be used over the next four years of the Alliance. This grant will help to fund various CPR Anytime™ projects, as well as support Community CPR Manager positions through our AHA affiliates. Laerdal had previously committed more than $1.5 million for more than three years of program funding.

Since 2007, nearly one million CPR Anytime kits have been distributed through the work of the Alliance. Thanks to the diligence of the Community CPR Managers and the support of affiliate and Alliance partners, a record 146,000 kits were placed during fiscal year 2012. With a research-proven training multiplier of 2.5 people trained per kit, we can estimate that almost 2.5 million people have been trained in lifesaving CPR skills through CPR Anytime.

Our Strategic Alliance with Laerdal has been key to many AHA successes, both domestically and internationally. On behalf of the AHA, I want to express appreciation to our partner for their continued commitment and dedication to our mission. Our work with Laerdal, through global CPR Anytime programs and innovative technologies such as eSimulation, helps AHA extend its reach to diverse audiences, increasing the number of people trained in CPR and advanced life support and ultimately, increasing the number of lives saved through these interventions.

Please join me in thanking Laerdal Medical for their collaboration, passion and ongoing support.

AHA’s EMS Week Activities

Tomorrow begins the AHA’s annual celebration of our partners in Emergency Medical Services for EMS Week. For these dedicated men and women, saving lives is not just a job, but a calling. We honor their heroic work during this special week.

We’ll be kicking off the week, officially celebrated May 20-26, by hosting an EMS “Twitter Party!” During this event, AHA staff and EMT-Ps and experts in the field of first response will be discussing EMS Systems of Care, STEMI and much more. If you’ve got a Twitter account, please join us for what’s sure to be an engaging social media discussion! Here are the details:

EMS Twitter Party

DATE: May 18th, 2012, 1:00 p.m., Central Time

Join the conversation: follow us at @HeartCPR and #WeHeartEMS#WeHeartEMS.

RSVP here: http://www.facebook.com/#!/events/362323360469752/

Expert panel includes:

Rod Kimble, David Hiltz, Shannon Armstrong, Bobby Wales—EMT-P with American Heart Association

Jose Maria E. Ferrer, M.D., Science & Medicine Advisor, American Heart Association

John Freese, M.D., Chief Medical Director, Fire Department of New York

Tom Bouthillet, Fire Captain and Paramedic, Hilton Head, South Carolina

Robert Suter, D.O., MHA, FACEP, FAAEM, FACOEP-D, FIFEM, Professor of Emergency Medicine, UT Southwestern- Dallas, TX

Next week, there’s a second opportunity to get involved in honoring EMS, by participate in a special EMS Week webcast, hosted by the Journal of EMS (JEMS). This FREE webcast will focus on evidence-based strategies that can be used by the EMS community to improve survival from out-of-hospital cardiac arrest.

JEMS Webcast

WHERE You Live Shouldn’t Determine IF You Live: EMS Strategies for Improving Cardiac Arrest Survival

DATE: May 21, 2012, 12:00 p.m., Central Time


David B. Hiltz, NREMT-P

Rodney L. Kimble, EMT- P

Register today!

AHA sees progress on CPR graduation requirement

AHA is making headway toward CPR training becoming a high-school graduation requirement in all states! I’m excited to report that both Tennessee and Minnesota have recently passed or strengthened legislation for students to receive this lifesaving training while in school.

After passing the Tennessee legislature with overwhelming support, Governor Bill Haslam signed Senate Bill 1680, the Carmen Burnette Act of 2012.  This act strengthens the state’s CPR as a graduation requirement by assuring that all students will receive CPR training that includes hands-on practice and skills testing to support learning, as opposed to merely cognitive training.

In Minnesota, the AHA’s You’re the Cure network did an incredible job assuring their voices were heard and, as a result of their tireless efforts, the lifesaving CPR in Schools initiative is now law in Minnesota. Over the last three months, nearly 900 messages were sent to legislators, the Governor was presented with more than 1200 petitions, more than 100 meetings were held with advocates and legislators, more than 50 calls were placed to the Governor’s office and countless media stories ran throughout the state to stressing the urgency and importance of the CPR in Schools bill. Governor Mark Dayton signed the CPR in Schools bill into law, which will result in the creation of generations of lifesavers in land of ten thousand lakes!

Let’s keep the momentum going! Please join the CPR in schools movement by signing up at the campaign website, BeCPRSmart.org, where you can show your support, read incredible stories of survival and even add your own story.