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Oregonians Advocate for Saving Lives

by Grace H. on Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Oregon Lobby Day and the CPR in Schools Hearing will take place this Thursday, February 28.  The American Heart Association is advocating that all Americans should be trained in how to save the life of a loved one or stranger.  Schools are an excellent place to start because they are a gateway to an entire generation that will be able to respond when they witness someone in their community or home experiencing sudden cardiac arrest.

A public hearing on SB 275, a bill that will require all high school students be trained in CPR, is scheduled for the Senate Education and Workforce Development Committee during the AHA Lobby Day on Thursday, February 28.  Legislators will hear from students trained in CPR, medical professionals, cardiac arrest survivors and others speaking in support of the bill.  Major League Baseball umpire and Beaverton resident, James Joyce, will also share his powerful story of saving the life a woman prior to a game last summer.  Joyce had learned CPR when he was in high school.

“We know that every 25 seconds someone has a heart attack and every 39 seconds someone dies of a heart attack,” said Lanette Day, Executive Director, American Heart Association – Oregon. “Sadly, most people, almost 90 percent, who experience cardiac arrest at home, work or in a public location, die because they don't receive immediate CPR from someone on the scene.  But given right away, CPR can double or even triple a person’s chance for survival,” said Day.

Volunteers and local leaders will meet with their representatives as part of the AHA’s “You’re the Cure” grassroots network and will share their personal stories to help shape policy that will impact future generations.   Students from Beaverton Valley Catholic School will also be in attendance and will help train attendees in the life-saving skill of CPR.

“Students in Oregon have already been getting trained in CPR and taking their knowledge to their family and friends,” said Stephanie Tama-Sweet, Government Relations Director, American Heart Association – Oregon.  “Teaching students CPR develops real-world skills and responsibility and it takes less than 30 minutes to learn – that’s less time than it takes to watch a TV sitcom – and doing so will bring more than 45,000 trained lifesavers to our community every year.”

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