A unique program aimed at offering high school students the opportunity to save lives by learning compressions-only CPR is seeing success in classrooms across New York City.
The FDNY Mobile CPR Unit recently spent the day at James Madison High School in Brooklyn as a part of the Be 911: Teens Take Heart program.
“We had a wonderful day with the Mobile CPR Unit at James Madison,” said Jeanne Quarto, ISS Coordinator at James Madison HS. “My students walked into the classroom knowing nothing about CPR. The guys were wonderful and patient and left my students with the knowledge that if a situation arose where CPR was needed, they could assist confidently.”
Through the program, which is offered for free, members of the FDNY are training high school students in all five boroughs to perform compressions-only CPR – or Bystander CPR – and, in addition, will educate students on cardiovascular health. It is being funded by the FDNY Foundation and NYC Service, and is being offered in coordination with the FDNY, the FDNY Mobile CPR Unit and the New York City Department of Education.
Quarto said the students who participated in the class have various academic challenges. She said the class was perfectly suited for them.
“The class was run by the most professional men who worked patiently with all my students who run the gamut of mental challenges. The class began with a short question and answer session, which got them engaged quickly,” she said. “A video followed, which got more of their attention because it featured a real-life situation. Next, they modeled the hands-on portion. The way this is set up is not only perfect for my Special Education students, but for everyone.”
The Teens Take Heart program kicked off in December 2015 at a special event at the FDNY High School in Brooklyn. At the event, more than 150 high school students participated in the first training. The program is featured on the FDNY’s educational website, FDNY Smart.
The FDNY worked extensively with NYC Service to identify schools within communities that have higher incidences of cardiac arrest and cardiovascular risk factors. Those schools were among the first to receive training through this first-of-its kind program. Additionally, the FDNY Bureau of Training – EMS Academy – has developed a healthy heart training presentation to educate students on cardiovascular health and to promote a healthy heart and healthy lifestyle.
“I’m so grateful to the Foundation for providing this service,” said Quarto. “I would love to have the Mobile CPR Unit back because I don’t think any student should graduate without having exposure to this life saving technique.”
To sign up for the free “Be 911: Teens Take Heart” program, click here.
Beyond high school students, the FDNY offers the Be 911 Compressions-Only CPR Program, which is funded by the Foundation and NYC Service. The program has trained more than 110,000 New Yorkers in compressions-only CPR.
Click here for more information and to sign up to participate in the “Be 911 Compressions-Only CPR Program.”
Photo credit: Jeanne Quarto
"We had a wonderful day with the Mobile CPR Unit at James Madison. “My students walked into the classroom knowing nothing about CPR. The guys were wonderful and patient and left my students with the knowledge that if a situation arose where CPR was needed, they could assist confidently."