Education

How to save a life in cases of sudden cardiac arrest. What is sudden cardiac arrest?

The Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation has issued a fact sheet on 12 Things You Should Know About Sudden Cardiac Arrest (see attachment), along with a downloadable infographic targeted to the public. Individuals and organizations are encouraged to share this information through their networks.

Awareness

PR WEB – Sudden Cardiac Arrest Survival Rates

An annual report from the American Heart Association indicates the incidence of sudden cardiac arrest occurring outside hospitals in the U.S. remains high and survival rates remain low. Bystander intervention—a key determinant of survival—also remains low. The Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation urges the public to learn CPR and how to use automated external defibrillators (AEDs), since immediate bystander action can triple the chance of survival. And, since most cases outside hospitals occur in the home, chances are bystanders will be called upon to help save their loved ones.

Click the image below to continue reading:

New Jersey Student Athlete Cardiac Screening Task Force

The New Jersey Student Athlete Cardiac Screening Task Force was created by law in 2010 as a response to the deaths of student athletes in the State. The seven-member task force is “responsible for studying, evaluating and developing recommendations regarding specific measures to enhance the cardiac screening process of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy and other cardiac conditions in student athletes.” [1]

In March of 2012, the Task Force issued an informational brochure which was sent to the heads of all school districts in the state with mandatory distribution to parents and guardians of every student athlete. The brochure provides information on the common causes of sudden cardiac death in young athletes, warning signs, and screening recommendations in an easy to understand, question-and-answer format. The final section of the brochure addresses AEDs and states:

The American Academy of Pediatrics/New Jersey Chapter recommends that schools:
• Have an AED available at every sports event (three minutes’ total time to reach and return with the AED)
• Have personnel available who are trained in AED use present at practices and games.
• Have coaches and athletic trainers trained in basic life support techniques (CPR)
• Call 911 immediately while someone is retrieving the AED.”

We applaud the effort of the Task Force and happy to see this important informational communication on student athlete cardiac health.

To download a copy of the brochure,  click either image below:

Legislation

JTB Foundation successful in sponsoring legislation requiring CPR/AED training for NJ High School st

NJ Lt. Gov. Guadagno signs bill requiring public high school students to learn CPR /AED

Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno signed a bill Wednesday mandating basic lifesaving medical training in the state’s public high schools. “We are signing a piece of legislation that is no doubt going to save lives throughout the state of New Jersey,” she said. The bill requires public high school students before graduation to receive cardiopulmonary resuscitation training, commonly referred to as CPR, as well as instruction on how to use an automated external defibrillator (AED).

The John Taylor Babbitt Foundation did their part to help the bill become a law by working with the American Heart Association in raising awareness and soliciting the support of our legislators. Providing testimony before the NJ State Senate and Assembly were JTB Foundation “Heart Club” advocates and NJ high school students Victoria Rasmussen, Elise Corsaniti, Erin Healy (Chatham High School) ; Caroline Watt (Oak Knoll School of the Holy Child) ; Julian Greer (The Pingry School) and Kate Roland (Villa Walsh Academy) .

At the signing ceremony, the Lt Governor recognized the powerful impact of our students’ testimony. “Their testimony was crucial in convincing our legislators that this bill should be passed,” she said.

JTB Impacts New Legislation for Student-Athlete Physicals and Cardiac Incident Reporting

The JTB Foundation is thrilled to report that its strong backing of advanced physical examinations for all student-athletes in New Jersey schools has resulted in a new bill that will lead to the detection of cardiac problems in young people.

Governor Chris Christie in June signed into law the Scholastic Student-Athlete Safety Act, which requires that sports-playing pupils in grades 6 through 12 not only get a comprehensive physical but that their physicians use a certain form for the results of that physical. Schools have to start using the forms in September 2014.

“The law adds questions about cardiac symptoms and family history to the standard physical exam required of all sports participants,” said JoAnne Babbitt, vice president of the JTB Foundation.

The bill, sponsored by Sen. Fred Madden (D-Gloucester), also provides for the training of school nurses and coaches to interpret the data from those physicals in an effort to properly diagnose heart ailments similar to those that have led to deaths of young athletes across the state.

“We spoke to Senator Madden on numerous occasions about this bill,” noted Babbitt. “He is really passionate about this topic.” Another bill the JTB Foundation supported is called the Children’s Sudden Cardiac Events Reporting Act, also sponsored by Sen. Madden and signed by Gov. Christie in late August. It requires the reporting of children’s sudden cardiac events and establishes a statewide database as a repository for the information.
“One of the issues of Sudden Cardiac Arrest among young people is that it it never had to be reported,” noted Babbitt. “Now we’ll be able to start measuring exactly how big a problem it is in this state. And we will be able to see how many lives are saved by AEDs.”

The bill grew out of a blue ribbon task force studying the incidence of young athletes who die suddenly while participating in sports in New Jersey. A report by the task force specifically recommended the appropriate screening with a high quality family history and physical examination together with immediate response strategies to react to potentially fatal life-threatening arrhythmias.

No doubt this information can help improve the survival rates of children who experience sudden cardiac events, sad Assemblyman Patrick Diegnan (D-Middlesex), who was also a sponsor of Janet’s Law, which was enacted last year to require all New Jersey schools to have automated external defibrillators.

“Too many children have been taken from us far too soon because of sudden and undetected cardiac conditions,” Diegan noted.

Good Samaritan Bill Signed into Law

On Thursday May 3, 2012 the Good Samaritan Bill was signed into law by Governor Chris Christie. The Good Samaritan Law protects an uncertified person who uses an AED (automated external defibrillator) in an attempt to save a life from civil liability if they unintentionally cause injury. The signing of the bill took place a little more than two months after the bill was passed by the State Senates and Assembly.

The signing of the bill represents the culmination of two years of hard work by Joanne and David Babbitt, as well as the rest of the John Taylor Babbitt Foundation Board. State Senator Joe Vitale and Assemblyman Peter Barnes, who sponsored the bill in the Senate and the House respectively, both deserve a great deal of thanks as the Good Samaritan Law could never have happened without their help.

The passing of this law will hopefully make our mission to have an AED available in every school and public meeting place an easier task. Before the law, an AED was seen by some as a liability should the need arise for one and no certified person available. With the passing of the law, it is essentially recognized as a user-friendly life saving device.

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Youth Sporting Event AED Bill Passes in NJ Assembly

TRENTON – A bill requiring defibrillators at municipal or county recreation departments and nonprofit youth serving organization sporting events passed in the Assembly this afternoon by a vote of 41-19-14.

As amended by committee, the bill requires that beginning on September 1, 2015, youth serving organizations (such as, Little Leagues, Babe Ruth Leagues, Pop Warner Leagues, Police Athletic Leagues, and youth soccer leagues), which organize, sponsor, or are otherwise affiliated with youth athletic events that are played on municipal, county, school, or other publicly-owned fields, must ensure that there is available on site an AED at each youth athletic event and practice held on the department’s or organization’s home field.

The department or organization must designate one or more umpires, coaches, or licensed athletic trainers who will be present at the athletic event or practice, to be responsible for ensuring that the AED is available on site. The designated umpire, coach, or athletic trainer must be trained in CPR and the use of an AED in accordance with law.

Arguing in the minority, Assemblywoman Caroline Casagrande (R-11) (pictured) said that while she did not question the good intentions of the bill, she could not support an overregulating bill, in her view, which saddles local taxpayers with more state-mandated costs.

Assembly Democrats Bob Andrzejczak, Wayne DeAngelo, Nancy Pinkin and Annette Quijano co-sponsored the bill.

“The story has become all too familiar. A seemingly healthy young person playing a sport suddenly collapses on the field from an undiagnosed heart condition and never gets back up,” said Andrzejczak. “Sudden cardiac arrest is the number one killer of student athletes. A properly administered defibrillator can boost a victim’s survival rate by 60 percent or more. This is more than enough reason to have a defibrillator available at youth sporting events.”

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