Perdue signs two life-saving bills into law

Posted July 26, 2012

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— Gov. Beverly Perdue signed two pieces of legislation into law Thursday that she says could save lives in North Carolina.

House Bill 837 requires students to learn CPR and the Heimlich maneuver – and pass a test showing their proficiency in both – in order to graduation from high school. It becomes effective with the Class of 2015.

House Bill 914 requires at least one automatic external defibrillator unit, or AED, in every state building in North Carolina and that state workers be trained to use them.

"I can think of nothing we've done this year that has any more profound and long-lasting effects on the health and wellness and survivability in North Carolina from any kind of heart attack or incident," Perdue said.

Schools are already required to teach CPR, but the regulation isn't enforced, officials said.

Only 5 percent of North Carolinians who go into cardiac arrest outside of a hospital setting will survive, but their chances double or triple with CPR and a defibrillator, according to the American Heart Association.

"It's a way to save lives," Perdue said. "A quarter of all the people who die in North Carolina die from some kind of cardiac incident."

Rep. Becky Carney, D-Mecklenburg, who suffered a heart attack in her legislative office in 2009, sponsored the legislation. She says her life was saved because an AED was in the Legislative Building and former Rep. Bob England, a physician, performed CPR on her.

Perdue bill signing Laws call for students to learn CPR, defibrillators in state buildings

"This was pretty much her life's work after her second birth, in many ways," said Carney's son, Brian Gullette. "She now has a second birthday on April 2nd, and every year, she says, 'I'm 3 years old. I'm 4 years old.' So, we have a great celebration every year."

Perdue also encouraged adults to get CPR training, which is offered in most communities through civic and church groups, the Red Cross and community colleges.

Heart disease is the cause of 23 percent of all deaths in North Carolina, according to the American Heart Association.

Almost 185 out of every 100,000 North Carolina residents died of heart disease in 2008, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation. The state ranked 29th nationally, although its rate was slightly below the national average.


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  • hum868 Aug 1, 2012

    THis is very simple: it is free to learn hands on CPR. The American Heart guidelines now recommend hands only CPR if you cannot afford CPR certification. Check it out. It takes two minutes to learn. If you WITNESS an ADULT collapse activate 9-1-1 start compressions PERIOD. NO MOUTH TO MOUTH. DO not stop compressions and you may save a life. You do not have to be certified. You do not have to spend money. ANyone can do this! Hopefully North Carolinians can improve our cardiac arrest survival rate of a mere 8% with just bystanders jumping in and doing something. That is the reason Gov. Perdue signed the BILL to encourage People do something. It is our duty to jump in and do something! WE do not have to be heros! But just about anyone can start pushing hard and fast on a person's chest until EMS gets there! CHECK OUT AHA WEBSITE "Hands only CPR".

  • RustyDawg Jul 27, 2012

    Kids learn by watching what others do. They see adults texting and driving every time they get on the road. You can't pull up to the stop light @ Crabtree and not see half a dozen people texting behind the wheel. Instead of standing there watching and writing tickets they'd rather go up to the Golden Corral office parking lot and clock people coming down one of the steepest grades in Wake Co. How many wrecks have you ever seen on that particular stretch of road. I've lived here all of my life and have never seen one. Our gov't is pityful in how it operates. It starts at the top with lack of leadership. Thanks Bev!

  • sabby06 Jul 27, 2012

    I'm outraged that anyone would even pretend to be outraged at this.
    lovelarvae-------------thank you.

  • RustyDawg Jul 27, 2012

    Here we go again! Oh, its so good for the people of NC blah blah blah! You want to do some good for the people of NC? Get the f#*&ing cell phones off the road!

  • Working4aLiving Jul 27, 2012

    Lovelarvae....students already take this class in can they now say they are JUST adding?? And the students that aren't interested will not retain what they learn to actually remember how to preform CPR so why MAKE them take it, you sure can't make them use it? Or should it become a new law that everyone has to be CPR certified and must drop what they are doing when someone is in need or be hold accountable by law? I have medical training(nursing) and yes I am CPR certified, but I made the choice to have this training, no one forced me.

  • lovelarvae Jul 27, 2012

    I'm outraged that anyone would even pretend to be outraged at this.

  • Working4aLiving Jul 27, 2012

    So, learn CPR and take Spanish and you can graduate from high school. This is 2 things our students will now HAVE to take in school that I don't agree with. But, that's just my opinion.

  • kermit60 Jul 27, 2012

    And the money to fund all this is comming from where? In the more populated counties this could cost tens of thousands of dollars. I guess she felt the need to go out spending.

  • dollibug Jul 26, 2012

    I hope Governor Perdue will also sign this petition as well.... has served enough time for her part in what took place....

  • rdc42179 Jul 26, 2012

    Not against young people learning CPR, in fact everyone should. And our high school kids already get this training. So why is it necessary to mandate that they pass a test and create enforcement measures at a time when the Gov is always getting on her soapbox about not having enough money for our school system. Maybe this is her mini me version of Obamacare. Be glad when they both are out of office