Bill would require high school CPR training

A public hearing on SB275, a bill that will require all high school students be trained in CPR, was held by the Senate Education and Workforce Development Committee on Feb. TUALATIN VALLEY FIRE & RESCUE - TVF&R Fire Chief Mike Duyck facilitates hands-only CPR training to 400 people at a recent Valley Catholic speech tournament.

Legislators heard from medical professionals, EMS officials and Valley Catholic students trained in CPR.

In November 2011, TVF&R and Valley Catholic Middle School of Beaverton implemented the first partnership in Oregon between a fire department and school to teach hands-only CPR to the community. Since that time, 150 eighth-grade students from Valley Catholic have taught hands-only CPR to more than 2,100 community members.

One of those community members was Vancouver resident Angela Winemeuller who had the chance to render aid to a cardiac patient in her hometown Feb. 24, just one day after learning hands-only CPR at a speech tournament at Valley Catholic.

Also testifying was Raoul Meekcoms, a cardiac arrest survivor, and his wife, Sandy, who performed hands-only CPR before Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue paramedics arrived to provide advanced life support care.

Annually, more than 300,000 people experience a cardiac arrest.

Many die before ever reaching a hospital due to not receiving timely CPR. According to TVF&R, sudden cardiac arrest can strike anyone, anywhere, and when it does, a patient’s survival depends on the people around them. When provided quickly, CPR doubles the chance of survival for a cardiac patient.

“In TVF&R’s service area, cardiac survival rates exceed the national average, ranging between 11 percent and 23 percent for the past several years,” TVF&R Fire Chief Mike Duyck said. “I attribute this, not only to our department’s investment in paramedics and advanced cardiac drugs and equipment on every unit, but our community’s demonstrated willingness to perform hands-only CPR during a cardiac event.”

Duyck added, “Passing SB275 will bring more than 45,000 trained lifesavers to our community every year.”

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