STATEHOUSE — Legislation authored by State Representative Ron Bacon (R- Chandler) regarding sudden cardiac arrest awareness was signed into law today by Gov. Pence.
House Enrolled Act (HEA) 1290 adds athletic trainers to the definition of "health care provider." It also requires the Department of Education to disseminate guidelines, information sheets and forms to schools so that they can inform and educate coaches, student athletes, cheerleaders, parents and legal guardians of the nature and risk of sudden cardiac arrest.
At the post-secondary level, the Commission on Higher Education will also be required to disseminate such documents to the educational institution’s athletic department to inform their coaches, student athletes and cheerleaders.
“I am proud to see this legislation signed into law as I feel it is the most important piece of legislation I carried this session,” said Rep. Bacon. “Sudden cardiac arrest is one of the leading causes of death in the United States and affects our youth at an alarming rate. The more educated the public is about recognizing and treating the symptoms of sudden cardiac arrest, the more lives we can save.”
As a result of this new law, any high school athlete who is suspected of experiencing a symptom of sudden cardiac arrest will have to be removed from the athletic activity at the time the symptom is identified. Their parent or legal guardian will be notified, and they cannot return to play until their parent or legal guardian has provided verbal permission to the coach.
“This legislation is all about awareness,” said Rep. Bacon. “During an emergency, particularly concerning their children, parents want to be empowered. This will allow them to make the most informed decisions they can regarding their child’s health and safety.”
In addition, this legislation requires each school corporation and accredited nonpublic school to include instruction in the psychomotor skills necessary to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation and the use of an automated external defibrillator in their high school health education curriculum.
HEA 1290 goes into effect on July 1, 2014.