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Press Release: American Heart Association’s “Be the Beat”  

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Association’s Campaign Inspires Teens to Use CPR, AEDs to Save Lives

DALLAS, Dec 1Be the Beat, the American Heart Association’s new online cardiac arrest awareness campaign, teaches 12- to 15-year-olds fun ways to learn the basics of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and how to use an automated external defibrillator (AED). Video games, interactive quizzes and 100-beat-per-minute songs can help teach teens and tweens what to do if someone collapses in sudden cardiac arrest.

At, users will find:

* The Basics: Three instructional videos that demonstrate conventional CPR with breaths, Hands-OnlyTM CPR and how to use an AED.

* The Heart Trek Experience: Virtual tour through a 3-D animated version of the heart in which participants earn points by playing video games and taking interactive quizzes.

* The World of Hearts: Users create unique avatars, track and compare their scores in the Heart Track Experience with other users and view profiles and testimonies of other participants.

* Music Playlist: A downloadable playlist of 100-beat-per-minute songs (100 beats per minute is the correct rate for chest compressions during CPR).

* Stuff: Free printable stickers, T-shirt decals and stationery, and free downloadable widgets and wallpapers.

The Web site also features a section for teachers and administrators who want to implement a CPR/AED education program in their schools. Free downloadable lesson plans and templates for creating and sustaining an in-school emergency response plan are included in the teacher/administrator portion of the site,

“Be the Beat is helping to create the next generation of lifesavers by empowering teens and tweens to act when they see someone suddenly collapse,” said Michael Sayre, M.D., chair of the American Heart Association’s Emergency Cardiovascular Care Committee. “Sadly, far too many people are dying from cardiac arrest – we want this campaign to inspire people to help save lives.”

During a cardiac arrest, the heart suddenly stops beating normally and the victim collapses into unconsciousness. Oxygen-rich blood stops circulating. Without quick action, such as immediate CPR, a victim of cardiac arrest can die within four to six minutes.

Every day, nearly 800 Americans suffer sudden cardiac arrest at home, at work or in other public locations, and less than eight percent of them survive to hospital discharge, according to the American Heart Association. However, studies show providing CPR can more than double or triple a cardiac arrest victim’s chance of survival. But less than one-third of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest victims receive that help.

By increasing the number of people who know how to respond properly to sudden cardiac arrest, Be the Beat will help increase the odds of bystander CPR and AED use and give more cardiac arrest victims a better chance at life.

Be the Beat is funded by a $1 million grant from the Medtronic Foundation.

For more information on the youth awareness campaign, visit

American Heart Association: Founded in 1924, we’re the nation’s oldest and largest voluntary health organization dedicated to building healthier lives, free of heart disease and stroke. To help prevent, treat and defeat these diseases — America’s No. 1 and No. 3 killers — we fund cutting-edge research, conduct lifesaving public and professional educational programs, and advocate to protect public health. To learn more or join us in helping all Americans, call 1-800-AHA-USA1 or visit

Medtronic and the Medtronic Foundation: Medtronic, Inc. (, headquartered in Minneapolis, is the global leader in medical technology – alleviating pain, restoring health, and extending life for millions of people around the world. The Medtronic Foundation is committed to improving the health of people and communities. Its grant making is focused in three areas: health, education and community. Through the Be the Beat Web site, the Medtronic Foundation is providing $1,000 grants for school staff to help fund CPR and AED training outreach programs within their school or community.

If you have a moment, please stop by and view this video showcasing the power of CPR.

Disclaimer: I received no compensation for this post. I am simply sharing this information with my readers in support of Heart Health Month.

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