MANILA, Aug. 1 (PNA) — A lawmaker has proposed the mandatory inclusion of basic Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) training for K-12 high school students to actively involve the youth in saving human lives.
“We must promote health consciousness among Filipinos and equip able-bodied citizens, especially the young sector, with the necessary know-how and basic skills to be first responders during emergencies,” Pampanga 1st district Rep. Joseller “Yeng” M. Guiao said.
Guiao, author of HB 5891 or “An Act requiring K-12 High School Students to Undergo CPR Training,” commended the Philippine Heart Association (PHA) for involving all citizens, particularly the youth, in its advocacy to increase CPR knowledge as “a single most effect first aid intervention that can be administered to an individual suffering from cardiac arrest.”
Guiao particularly cited PHA President, Dr. Alex Junia, PHA Director and Advocacy Committee chairman, Dr. Orlando Bugarin, and PHA Council on CPR Chairman, Dr. Francis Lavapie, among others, for their unrelenting campaign nationwide to involve more people in saving lives through CPR.
“The advent of K-12 enhanced education program curriculum provides us with a golden window to emulate this best practice and help breed a new generation of life savers,” the Pampanga lawmaker, a sportsman himself, stressed.
Under HB5891, a student must be certified by his/her competent school authority as having undergone the CPR training program, at least once, before being allowed to graduate.
The lawmaker proposes that effective School Year 2016-2017 and every school year thereafter, all public and private high schools in the country must provide their students with one or more training sessions in CPR, through the use of psychomotor skills in an age-appropriate manner, during the seventh to twelfth grade.
“CPR instruction must include training that has been developed by the Philippine Heart Association or the Philippine National Red Cross, or using nationally recognized, evidence-based guidelines for emergency cardiovascular care and incorporating psychomotor skills to support the instruction,” the bill provides.
“As far as practicable, schools must incorporate the training as part of their comprehensive health and physical education curriculum,” the author said.
Likewise, Guiao proposes that schools have the option of allowing emergency medical technicians, paramedics, police officers, fire fighters, teachers, school employees or other qualified instructors to provide the training. An instructor is required to be authorized to provide instructions in CPR only if the instruction is intended to lead to a certification for students, the bill states.
However, the author said, students suffering from any physical or mental disability that may render them unable to perform a CPR procedure are exempted from going through the CPR training program.
The proposed statute also mandates that the Department of Education and Department of Health, in consultation with concerned NGOs, shall come up with the implementing rules and regulations (IRR), within three months after the law’s effectivity.
The author further noted that the American Heart Association (AHA) reported that every hour in the United States, 48 people will suffer cardiac arrest outside hospitals and that nine (9) out of ten (10) of them will not survive.
“However, the AHA stated that a victim’s survival doubles or even triples when lifesaving CPR is administered immediately after sudden cardiac arrest, but only 32% of cardiac arrest victims get CPR from a bystander,” he added.
While CPR has been traditionally a technique performed almost exclusively by physicians and health care professionals, it has evolved over the years into something easier to understand and perform, the author noted.
Furthermore, Guiao said, the AHA which is in the forefront of the advocacy to increase CPR knowledge among the general public, had designed several brochures and learning programs for people to learn CPR in as little as twenty (20) minutes.
He also noted that AHA’s campaign for widespread teaching and training had extended to schools, where 24 out of America’s 50 States enacted legislation to make mandatory the teaching of CPR techniques in high school with some, even making the program a prerequisite for graduation.
The bill has been referred for appropriate consideration to the Committee on Basic Education and Culture chaired by Rep. Kimi Cojuangco (5th District, Pangasinan).
“This proposed statute will surely have a tremendous positive effect in molding the country’s youth and in saving countless lives,” Guiao said.(PNA)