Legislation creating curriculum standards for CPR education in high schools heads to governor’s desk
The State Senate today unanimously passed Senate Bill 115, legislation sponsored by Senator Tom Killion (Chester and Delaware counties) which would establish a model curriculum for high schools for CPR instruction.
“With the potential to save lives, I am gratified my colleagues have passed this important legislation,” said Killion. “Hands-on education is critical to providing effective CPR training. In passing this bill, Pennsylvania joins 38 other states in providing guidelines to ensure up-to-date standards for CPR education.”
Killion noted enhanced academic standards have been a priority of the both American Heart Association and American Stroke Association for the past several years.
“It’s important to note my legislation includes no mandate. CPR instruction is already part of Pennsylvania’s academic standards. My bill ensures all schools are providing the most current method of administering CPR, the hands-only technique, and affords schools flexibility in how their students are taught, such as working with community organizations like the American Heart Association to facilitate the training.”
Numerous organizations participated in crafting SB115, including the Pennsylvania State Education Association (PSEA), PA Athletic Trainers’ Society, Independence Blue Cross, PA Medical Society, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), The Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation, the American College of Cardiology, and the Foundation for Delaware County.
“SB115 will preserve the traditional rights of professional educators to select the materials, methods, and strategies they believe are most appropriate at the local level while enhancing life-saving CPR education,” said PSEA President Rich Askey.
SB115 did not receive a single ‘NO’ vote in either chamber of the General Assembly, in committee nor before the full House of Representatives or Senate.
Killion expressed his hope that this legislation will make possible more stories similar to one which appeared in the April 15, 2015 edition of the Philadelphia Inquirer, detailing now-Cardinal O’Hara High School grad Killeen McCan’s efforts to initiate a CPR training course for 800 of her schoolmates.
“Medical emergencies can befall any of us without forewarning. Correctly performed, CPR saves countless lives every year. My legislation will ensure our high school students receive hands-only, state-of-the-art CPR training and education.”