Saving Lives at the High School Level

Today, the Senate passed a bill I sponsored, SB 711, and now moves on to the House for consideration.

The bill would require high school students in public schools to receive 30 minutes of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) training, including the performance of the Heimlich maneuver or other first aid for choking. This training would take place as part of the school’s existing physical education curriculum, and would need to be completed prior to graduation.

According to the American Heart Association, sudden cardiac arrest is a leading cause of death in the United States, with nearly 400,000 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests occurring yearly.

This training would not only save lives at schools, but at home, work or anywhere a trained student may find someone in heart related or choking distress.

Immediate action with CPR is the most effective way to save an individual, as an ambulance may not arrive for several minutes, and providing CPR could mean the difference between life and death.

The benefits of being trained in CPR extend far beyond simply knowing the procedure. The knowledge and ability to save a life when the time comes would be extremely rewarding, and would empower high school students to carry that confidence into their adult lives.

As always, I encourage my constituents to contact me throughout the year with comments, questions or suggestions by calling my office at (573) 751-5713. To find more information about the bills I sponsor, visit Thank you for reading this and for your participation in state government.