Rep. Ackerman legislation would require 911 system to have over-the-phone CPR operators on staff
STATE HOUSE — Rep. Mia Ackerman (D-Dist. 45, Cumberland, Lincoln) has introduced legislation
that would improve over-the-phone CPR instructions by requiring the 911 system to certify and staff individuals trained in telecommunicator CPR.
The legislation (2019-H 5568) would establish an emergency telephone system call review and quality improvement, and would require at least one 911 system operator trained in telecommunicator cardiopulmonary resuscitation be on duty at all time.
“911 operators are the real first responders and can make the difference between life and death,” said Representative Ackerman. “When CPR starts before the arrival of an emergency medical technician, the person in cardiac arrest is two-to-three times more likely to survive. T-CPR can help untrained callers provide cardiopulmonary resuscitation. It can also remind those who are trained how to provide high-quality CPR.”
Each year an estimated 350,000 sudden cardiac arrest events occur in the United States in an out-of-hospital environment, according to the American Heart Association, which strongly endorses T-CPR-trained 911 operators. Almost all of these events result in a call for help to 911. Without quick intervention in the form of CPR and defibrillation, death becomes more likely.
“Implementing a policy where operators trained in T-CPR are always on duty could save countless lives,” said Representative Ackerman. “Emergency telecommunicators are a vital link in the lifesaving chain, and this legislation will help to ensure that CPR is being performed before emergency medical personnel arrive.”
The bill, which is cosponsored by Majority Leader K. Joseph Shekarchi (D-Dist. 23, Warwick), Julie Casimiro (D-Dist. 31, North Kingstown, Exeter), William W. O’Brien (D-Dist. 54, North Providence) and Camille F.J. Vella-Wilkinson (D-Dist. 21, Warwick), has been referred to the House Committee on Health, Education and Welfare.
For more information, contact:
Daniel Trafford, Publicist
State House Room 20
Providence, RI 02903