The American Heart Association helped host an event on October 5th to mark Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) Awareness Month. AHA volunteer Lance Becker, M.D., – one of the country’s leading SCA response experts and a professor of emergency medicine at the University of Pennsylvania – served as the expert speaker. Dr. Becker described the prevalence of SCA, it’s stunningly high death rate, and his work to stem the tide.
In recognition of their contributions to raising awareness of SCA through the media, Robert Langreth and Matthew Herper of Forbes and David Epstein of Sports Illustrated received awards from the Coalition. Congresswoman Betty Sutton was recognized for her championship of H.R. 1380, the Josh Miller HEARTS Act. This legislation – which passed the House in June – authorizes the Department of Education to provide funding to local schools for the purchase of AEDs.
Brian Buck, a 30-year-old SCA survivor, told his story about suffering SCA while playing soccer. Fortunately, Cheryl Victoria, the coordinator for exercise physiology and fitness services at the ConocoPhillips Wellness Center, responded quickly and effectively to the emergency using an AED and CPR. Buck regained a pulse and was taken to a hospital where he received therapeutic hypothermia, a treatment that cools the body to prevent organ damage. He has since made a full recovery. The event culminated with CPR training lead by Dr. Becker.