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TWU receives CPR teaching grant from American Heart Association

Tennessee Wesleyan University has received a grant from the American Heart Association to offer classes in hands-only CPR, with the goal of having 300 people trained by April. The grant includes a training kit with practice dummies and DVD instructions.

“The CPR Training Kit has everything one needs to host a training session,” TWU nurse Connie Cowherd said. “It gives more people the chance to actually practice CPR. Having this kit gives our students an opportunity to learn organizational skills while implementing this program for their peers, family and community.”

TWU is one of 14 universities across the nation to receive the grant to participate in the pilot program from the American Heart Association. February is National Heart Month, designed to bring heart disease and prevention methods into the spotlight. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, heart disease is the leading cause of death for Americans. This training class will allow community members to learn how to potentially save someone’s life in the event of total cardiac arrest.

“I think it is extremely important to have hands-on practice in order to provide effective CPR,” Cowherd said. “Unless you have performed CPR or had training you have no idea how much pressure and number of compressions it takes to keep the blood flowing to the brain. Saving one life makes it all worthwhile.”

Cowherd is trained to teach the class, which typically lasts 30-40 minutes. TWU is also looking for other individuals on campus and in the community interested in becoming class facilitators. Facilitators will be able to check out the training kit to teach hands-only CPR to groups in the community. Anyone may sign up to be a facilitator, though class spaces must have room for 10-20 participants, a table for participants who are unable to kneel to practice compressions on the mannequin and a TV with DVD player.

Anyone interested in becoming a facilitator or attending a hands-only CPR class should contact Connie at (423) 746-5274.