Last week we finished up our very successful summer hands only CPR season. We were blessed this summer to have 3 fabulous interns. They taught over 40 classes and 700 citizens in Louisville, KY hands only CPR. Our focus for teaching in the summer is in community centers, churches and area businesses. We also did some brief hands only CPR demonstrations at the Dirt Bowl basketball tournament and at a Louisville FC soccer game. This was truly a great teaching season that moved our total number of people taught hands only CPR at over 17,000 since we started.
This year Kentucky became the 29th state to mandate hands only CPR education for high school students prior to graduation. We went out last week and taught Jefferson County Public Schools health and physical education teachers about cardiac arrest and gave them our hands only CPR class. Because of the new state law our services have been highly sought after and we are full for the fall teaching period. We have started preparing for the upcoming teaching period with 2 teams of instructors. We are getting our new instructors ready to start this week. This is what our basement looks like in preparation. It is going to be a busy fall teaching.
The lead story in the Louisville Courier Journal today led off with a story by Darla Carter on the new law requiring CPR education for Kentucky High School students. Kentucky became the 32nd state to require this basic CPR training this year. There are now 34 states that require this training and likely all of the states will get on board shortly. It is nice to see Kentucky proactive about improving the health of our citizens.
Our organisation has been treating hands only CPR and demonstrating the proper use of an automated external defibrillator for the past 2 years. We have taught most of the freshmen high school students in 5 Kentucky counties in the last 2 years. We offer this service at no cost to the schools and usually do the education through the health and PE classes. Our instructors are often college students, nursing students and interested high school students. The program has been wildly successful and has taught over 16,000 people in the last 2 years.
Currently, we have a team of 3 college students teaching hands only CPR this summer. We are going to local businesses, community centers, churches and anywhere that people want to be educated about what to do in a cardiac arrest. We have 2 scheduled free classes, July 14 and August 11th at the office of Louisville Cardiology, in the next month that are open to the public. If you are interested in scheduling a class please contact us through our website. Remember 80% of cardiac arrests happen at home, so the person you may need to perform CPR on is likely someone that you know or love. Our classes last only take 30 minutes to complete and they are free.
Thanks to Darla Carter for her great article.
Another successful hands only CPR teaching period has come to a close as our instructors finish their college semester. Our interns were busy this spring and taught over 1400 high school students hands only CPR. They taught high school freshmen in 3 different counties in Kentucky. I want to publicly thank them for all of their efforts. Our instructors are full time college students and do the CPR education in addition to their scholastic work.
In other exciting news, we have expanded our teaching and have brought hands only CPR education to the campus of DePauw University. Start the Heart Foundation has had a strong relationship with DePauw University with over 10 former interns with our organization currently on campus. Several of our former interns got together and taught members of the DePauw panhellenic council recently. It was a high energy event enjoyed by all. Hopefully, in the future we will be able to provide a systematic training program to all members of the DePauw student body. This was an important first step. A special thanks to Anna, Clara and Alex for making this happen.
We have now been teaching hands only CPR for 2 years. Some of our stats in the first 2 years we have taught 16,604 people hands only CPR mainly in the Louisville area. We have taught hands only CPR in 7 different counties in Kentucky and Indiana and have taught in over 40 different high schools. During this time period we have had 34 college students serve as our interns and many of them have gone on to enter medical school.
We recently hired our 3 summer interns and will resume our summer teaching program at the end of June. During this session we will offer hands only CPR teaching any time, any where and any place in an effort to reach as many people as possible. If you have a group of 15 or more people and would like for us to come and teach hands only CPR for free in as little as 30 minutes then please contact us through the website.
Lastly, this year Kentucky passed a law requiring hands only CPR training prior to graduation for high school. Kentucky became the 29th state to pass this legislation in the United States. Our teaching program meets all of the requirements for this training. We have done all of our teaching through health and PE classes with freshman. If you are a principal or health/PE teacher and we have not reached out to your school, then please contact us through the website to set up training this upcoming year.
This week the interns from Start the Heart Foundation are working with Dr. Lorrel Brown and Kentucky One Health to teach hands only CPR at the YUM Center. Kentucky One Health has been teaching all of their non-clinical employees hands only CPR this month. In addition, they are teaching at the University of Louisville women’s and men’s basketball game this week.
There were two booths set up in the concourse of the YUM Center and over 150 people were taught during the women’s game on Monday. STHF interns manned one of the training booths and did a tremendous job teaching a large number of fans in just a few minutes time. We really distilled the teaching down to “Call 911 and push hard and fast” if you witness a teen or adult collapse.
As part of the event, our team was covered by WAVE3 reporter Kasey Cunningham. I have been working with the AHA in Kentucky to help get legislation that will require hands only CPR education as a requirement for high school graduation. Our intern Megan was incredible. Check out the story at this link.
It was a great night. Lots of energy and a tremendous honor to be involved with Kentucky One Health’s effort to improve survival from cardiac arrest.
Today was the last day of our intense Winter hands only teaching program in Louisville, KY. Three weeks ago, seven students from DePauw University moved to Louisville to become hands only CPR instructors. These students came from all over the world to live here and benefit our community. We had interns from Brazil, New York City, Chicago, Kansas and Indiana.
When they arrived they did not really know each other. They came together as a group and became outstanding hands only CPR instructors. With the help of Janice Morgan, lead CPR instructor for LMEMS, they first became certified in traditional CPR. The interns then learned about and practiced teaching hands only CPR. On January 6th they went out into the Louisville community and began teaching hands only CPR. Since that time they have taught over 90 hands only CPR classes in 27 local area high schools. In addition, they taught in churches and our monthly class at Louisville Cardiology office. We taught over 3200 people hands only CPR in 12 days of full time teaching. As a first for the foundation, we expanded our teaching efforts into Indiana and taught freshmen high school students in 5 different counties in the Louisville region. It has been a busy and fruitful 3 weeks.
Louisville has a pitifully low bystander CPR rate of 16% last year. The number one reason for people not to perform CPR is a lack of education of what to do. It is hard to prove that the tremendous effort that these instructors just performed will make an immediate impact but it will make an impact in the future. Our foundation is dedicated to improving the cardiac arrest situation in Louisville. With first class interns like we just had, I have no doubt we will see an improvement in the future.
Thank you to our interns for their hard work and improving our community.
Special thanks to Sally who cooked, cleaned, fed and organized the logistics of the month.
My name is Emily and I am currently one of the winter interns for the Start the Heart Foundation. I was thrilled when I found out I had been selected for the position. When I applied I was looking for something educational and rewarding. It turns out Start the Heart was exactly what I was looking for. In a nutshell, I’ve spent the past three weeks traveling to high schools in the Louisville area to teach hands-only CPR and its importance.
Sometimes we find it challenging to keep the students’ attention for the entirety of the class, which is why we like to create real life scenarios they can put themselves in and understand the seriousness of the situation. We create a scenario that involves one of their parents having a cardiac arrest. We explain to the students that they would be the first ones on the scene to act and help their parents if they were to go down while at home. After repeating this scenario to the classes week after week it began to strike home for me.
I did not get the chance to meet either of my grandfathers because they passed before I was born from different kinds of heart disease. One of them died from coronary artery disease and one died from congestive heart failure. I still do not know the specifics of their conditions, or whether someone tried to give them CPR at the time. What I found the most fascinating and thought provoking was after 20+ years since their deaths CPR is still the publics best and only defense for those that suffer or go down from a heart attack or cardiac arrest. Maybe over the years the number, depth, and speed of compressions has changed and whether or not mouth-to-mouth is necessary has changed, but the general concept has not. CPR is pushing hard and fast in the center of the chest essentially acting as the person’s heart.
This unchanging idea about CPR makes me curious why an organization like the Start the Heart Foundation had not been created earlier. Before Start the Heart, the only people getting any kind of experience with CPR were those people that needed it for their jobs. Educating the general public about how to respond in these situations and how to perform CPR is the next best thing we can do to help with the survival for those people that experience a cardiac arrest. The teaching program Start the Heart has created is a great first step in the right direction, and I am thankful to have had the opportunity to give my time to the foundation and educate students in CPR.
My name is Clara and I am one of the interns for Start the Heart Foundation during the month of January Around the month of November, I found myself questioning about what I would do at my winter term period. I attend DePauw University and during the month of January we have Winter Term. Winter Term is an opportunity for students to do an internship, travel abroad or take a class on campus. Everyone was talking about their exciting on-campus classes or their abroad plans. At that time I had no clue what I was going to be doing during this period. Then I saw the application for STHF online. I started filling all the papers needed and sent in the application. Immediately, I received an email from Dr. and Mrs. Dillon about scheduling an interview.
I must admit I was nervous. Talking to two generous people that founded a non profit was scaring me at first. But, as soon as the skype turned on I felt at home. Both, Dr. and Mrs. Dillon were exceptionally kind. When I turned the skype off I thought: Oh my gosh, I just did my first internship interview ever! I felt great! After 20 minutes I received an email on my inbox from Dr. Dillon saying the cliché: “Congratulations, you have been accepted to STHF internship”.
I can’t explain how happy and excited I felt about it. I just started jumping and dancing in my dorm room.
I was excited about the idea of having an internship, of coming to Kentucky, of meeting Dr. Dillon and his family. But I must admit I didn’t realize at first what an amazing thing I would be doing by teaching high school students hands-only CPR. I didn’t realize at first, how much of a difference I would be making in those teenagers life’s. It was only when I got to my first class that I realized it. It was a tough class, I must admit, but I could see that the teenagers were actually wanting to learn from us. Even when pretending they didn’t care much, I could see their eyes and ears looking and listening to me. Furthermore, I had the chance to teach a disable student and that just proved me that even someone that is considered different from the most society was wanting to learn and help!
Now, I am from Brazil, and came to US to become a doctor. Because of this internship and Dr. Dillon I had the incredible opportunity to watch an open heart bypass surgery. The surgery was amazing and just showed me one more time how much I want to become a doctor. Moreover, I had the chance to be with Dr. Dillon for two days through his daily schedule. We ran up and down the hospitals stairs, from the rehab rooms to the cath lab and then back to the consults. All of it made me realize how pretty hard a doctors work is. It just confirmed what I expected. It was so rewarding to see how the patients were grateful were to Dr. Dillon.
After all, this internship not only showed me how important it is to have people like Dr. and Mrs. Dillon, that give their best efforts and time to increase the well being of society, but also made me more sure about becoming a doctor. I want to be able to become a physician and hopefully be able to do something extraordinary as STHF! All I have to say left is: Thank you Start the Heart Foundation for teaching me all of it!