HealthDay News — Pediatricians should advocate for life support training for children, parents, caregivers, school personnel, and the public, according to a technical report and policy statement published online May 23 in Pediatrics.
Susan M. Fuchs, M.D., from Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill., and colleagues from the American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on Pediatric Emergency Medicine discussed survival after out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA). The authors note that 7,037 children experience OHCA each year and that survival is 6.4 percent. Some evidence indicates that survival may be improved for children who receive immediate bystander cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). For survival after pediatric OHCA, early and effective CPR is essential.
James M. Callahan, M.D., from the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, and colleagues from the American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on Pediatric Emergency Medicine recommend that pediatricians should stay up to date on CPR performance and pediatric basic and advanced life support. Pediatricians should also advocate for including age-appropriate life support training for children as part of the school curriculum; providing life support training to school personnel; providing life support training for parents, caregivers, and the public; placement of an automated external defibrillator (AED) in every school and near every school athletic facility; and funding for promotion of these steps. In the absence of laws, pediatricians should work with parents and legislators to mandate CPR training and AED placement in public and private schools.
“Pediatricians are recognized as advocates for the health of all children and are in a unique position to advocate for increased life support training,” Callahan and colleagues write.