Nearly 1,000 people every day suffer from sudden cardiac arrest, which occurs when the heart stops beating. It leads to loss of circulation and loss of consciousness with no blood flow to the brain and other vital organs.
Several studies have shown the best chance of survival is within the first four minutes of occurrence. That’s why Mansfield ISD Health Services has partnered with Project ADAM (Automated Defibrillators in Adam's Memory) to help save lives.
Project ADAM is a comprehensive emergency response plan for schools. It was named after a 17-year-old boy from Wisconsin who died from sudden cardiac arrest on the basketball court.
“We have medical response teams on all campuses who are trained with CPR and using an AED (automated external defibrillator) to respond to a cardiac emergency,” said health coordinator Margaret Couldron. “Mansfield ISD is a strong believer in AEDs because we’ve had two instance on our campuses in which we needed to use them. They are truly life saving.”
MISD is now a Project ADAM Heart Safe District. That means all of its schools and facilities have an established emergency plan and response team in place in case of a sudden cardiac arrest situation.
For each school to become certified, a designated nurse had to put together a response team and place signage around the campus so that the location of the AED is clear.
The nurses also interacted with the local fire department and ambulance service and will engage in emergency drills twice a year.
“Being a part of Project ADAM is just another way of keeping our kids safe here in Mansfield ISD,” said Couldron.
Project ADAM is a national, non-profit organization established in 1999 with the goal of saving lives through advocacy, education, preparedness and collaboration to prevent sudden cardiac death. Learn more about the initiative here.