Advocating for CPR Training in Schools

The 2017 American College of Emergency Physicians Council directed in 2017 Resolution 29 that the ACEP take steps to create draft legislation to implement CPR training in schools.

This effort has largely been spearheaded historically by the American Heart Association. As of June of 2018, 38 states have a mandate for CPR instruction prior to graduation from high school that meets the guidelines set forward by the AHA.  Efforts in other states continue.

A work group from the State Legislative and Regulatory Committee worked closely with ACEP staff as well as state and national level staff representing the American Heart Association on this objective.

Included in this document are examples of sample legislation from states that have introduced and successfully passed CPR training legislation. It has been the experience of the American Heart Association that each state has unique requirements regarding legislation requiring specific K-12 education mandates requiring a tailored approach to fit different states. It is difficult here to include every possibility based on those states that remain without a CPR instruction mandate.

The legislation that has been supported by the American Heart Association has been based on a core group of principles. After review, the State Legislative and Regulatory Committee work group agrees that these goals are consistent with the ACEP Council Resolution.  Those core principles are also included in this document, and they are represented in the AHA’s own generic model, also attached..

The American Heart Association and ACEP have initiated a dialogue regarding efforts to pass CPR in Schools legislation in other states.   For ACEP state chapters interested in pursuing legislation to require CPR training before high school graduation. This document can provide an important starting point.  The ACEP State Legislative and Regulatory Committees, as well as Harry Monroe, Director of Chapter and State Relations, can provide assistance to further this goal. Each state is also encouraged to collaborate with the state medical society or association and the American Heart Association if pursuing this type of legislation.


Legislative Principles

Samples of Model Legislation

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