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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2019 - 2020 Regular Session


Posted: December 5, 2018 09:29 AM
From: Senator Thomas H. Killion
To: All Senate members
Subject: CPR Instruction for High School Students
I plan to introduce legislation focused on the importance of reducing death from the more than 350,000 cardiac arrests that occur outside of a hospital each year, and helping to prepare individuals to save lives through cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and the use of an automated external defibrillator (AED).

This legislation would enhance CPR instruction for students in grades 9 through 12. Specifically, my proposal would require the Pennsylvania Department of Education to consult with stakeholders knowledgeable in the content area to design model curriculum, age-appropriate materials, and guidelines for integrating CPR instruction into existing curriculum. Professional educators would be able to utilize these materials to deliver high-quality CPR instruction in a way that is most appropriate at the local level.

I believe this bill will go a long way in helping to prepare individuals to save lives through CPR; and ultimately, helping to reduce the number of deaths that occur from cardiac arrests each year.

Over the past two Session years, I have heard from a school board member as well as a number of constituents of the 9th Senatorial District, indicating they fully support this legislation. On numerous occasions, I have met with a constituent who resides in Concord Township, Delaware County, who has long supported this legislation as an advocate and volunteer; and as a mother of young man who suffered a heart attack and CPR saved his life.

This initiative has been a priority of the American Heart Association and the American Stroke Association for the past several years. This legislation has the full support of the PA Athletic Trainers’ Society, Inc.; Independence Blue Cross; the PA Medical Society; the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP); the Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation; Rachel Moyer of the Greg Moyer AED Fund; and the PA State Education Association (PSEA). There is no known opposition.

To date, 38 other states have adopted this policy, most recently Ohio and New York.

This legislation will be similar to SB 521, PN 2002, of the 2017-2018 Legislative Session which was co-sponsored by the following Senators: Killion, Bartolotta, Blake, Brewster, Costa, Dinniman, Folmer, Haywood, Laughlin, Leach, McGarrigle, Mensch, Rafferty, Reschenthaler, Sabatina, Schwank and Stefano. The bill was unanimously approved by the Senate, but was not considered by the House Education Committee prior to the last scheduled voting Session day.

Please join me in supporting this important legislation.

Introduced as SB115