Former pediatric residents Matt Harer, MD, and Jeff Yaeger, MD, MPH, recently published a study in the Wisconsin Medical Journal investigating CPR certification rates in Wisconsin high school coaches.
CPR can increase survival in instances of sudden cardiac arrest. Nationally, high school coaches are the first responders to sudden cardiac arrest in up to one-third of high school athlete collapses, but little is known about the status of their CPR certification. The primary goal of this study was to assess the proportion of Wisconsin high school coaches that are certified in CPR.
The study found that the majority of Wisconsin high schools do not require CPR certification for coaches. In Wisconsin, the proportion of coaches who act as the primary responder to a collapse is greater than previously reported. Although the majority of coaches in Wisconsin serve as the primary responder to an episode of sudden cardiac arrest, only about 50% are CPR certified.