The American Heart Association (AHA) advocates for CPR education as a requirement of secondary school curriculum. Unfortunately, many states have not adopted CPR education. Our aim was to investigate a low-cost, time effective method to educate students on Basic Life Support (BLS), including reeducation. This is a prospective, randomized study. Retention was assessed at 4 months post-initial education. Education was performed by AHA-certified providers during a 45-minute physical education class in a middle school in Florida. This age provides opportunities for reinforcement through high school, with ability for efficient learning. The study included 41 Eighth grade students. Students were randomized into two groups; one group received repeat education 2 months after the first education, the second group did not. All students received BLS education limited to chest compressions and usage of an Automated External Defibrillator. Students had skills and knowledge tests administered pre- and post-education after initial education, and repeated 2 and 4 months later to assess retention. There was a significant increase in CPR skills and knowledge when comparing pre- and post-education results for all time-points (p < 0.001). When assessing reeducation, a significant improvement was noted in total knowledge scores but not during the actual steps of CPR. Our study indicates significant increase in CPR knowledge and skills following a one-time 45-minute session. Reeducation may be useful, but the interval needs further investigation. If schools across the United States invested one 45–60-minute period every school year, this would ensure widespread CPR knowledge with minimal cost and loss of school time.
- Cardiopulmonary resuscitation
- Middle school
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health Informatics
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health