Requiring CPR Courses in Schools to Improve Out-Of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest Survival

Requiring CPR Courses in Schools to Improve Out-Of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest Survival

Mackenzie Thompson

by Mackenzie Thompson

Life Saver, AMC

posted on Aug 3, 2015, at 9:43 pm


DID YOU KNOW THAT THE SURVIVAL RATE of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest emergencies actually decreased from 11.4 percent in 2012 to only 9.5 percent in 2013 (source: American Heart Association)? How is it that despite our increase in medical technology and understanding of the importance of CPR administration we are still falling short?

cpr student practicing

Less than three percent of Americans receive CPR certification every year.

Let’s face it: more individuals need to have CPR certification. This inevitable reality is often easier said than done, especially with the busy lifestyle that many of us have. Children and teenagers, however, could be a solution to this disparity and help increase out-of-hospital cardiac arrest survival rates with proper administration of CPR.

In New York, the state’s Board of Regents has been regulating the “CPR in Schools” legislation that was signed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo this past fall, according to a news report published by The mandate has “recommended that each student learn hands-on CPR before graduating high school”. These courses will also teach students about practicing and using Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs), which analyze heart rhythms in cardiac emergencies and deliver a shock to victims to help regulate heart rhythms.

Once this new regulation passes, it would be up to the individual school districts to implement the CPR training. This comprehensive CPR training will help save more lives as hands-only CPR fails to teach students how to administer breaths and work with a team.

The article “Make CPR, Defibrillator Training Mandatory for High School Graduation: Experts” stated that many are even pushing to train middle school students along with current high school students. The article featured a new Institute of Medicine (IOM) report in which Robert Graham, the chair of the study committee, said that the capability of laypersons to deliver and administer appropriate interventions is too inconsistent and unreliable. According to the article, less than three percent of Americans receive CPR certification every year.

Anyone can help save a life: medical professionals, laypersons, strangers, bystanders, emergency responders, students, etc.

A Possible Solution: Online CPR Certification

New York has certainly set an example to other states regarding the requirement of CPR training prior to graduating high school. What does this mean for the changes in high school curriculum? It’s hard to say, but one solution could be utilizing eLearning to help students become certified.

With the help of modern technology and the growth of the Internet, many companies, like Advanced Medical Certification, are offering online CPR, AED & First Aid courses on various online platforms. Students of these courses can choose to take an online final exam to receive a provider card and proof of CPR, AED & First Aid certification.

The best time to take action is right now to improve survival rates with a greater understanding of how to perform CPR. If you feel a desire to make CPR certification a requirement within your community, consider contacting your state governor and make your voice heard.

Comment below: What do you think of a required CPR and AED course before graduating high school?

About Mackenzie

Mackenzie is a lover of world travel, photography, design, style and Chinese cooking. She is passionate about working towards a purpose, recently graduated from Indiana University with a degree in Media and Marketing, and is currently residing in Manhattan.

Contact Mackenzie at

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *