Bark River-Harris, Negaunee Schools Named ‘HEARTSafe’

The Michigan Departments of Health and Human Services (MDHHS), and Education (MDE); American Heart Association (AHA); Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA); and Michigan Alliance for Prevention of Sudden Cardiac Death of the Young (MAP-SCDY) on Thursday awarded 125 schools in Michigan with the MI HEARTSafe School designation which recognizes schools that are prepared to respond to cardiac emergencies.

Here in the Upper Peninsula, the Bark River-Harris and Negaunee High Schools were recognized, along with the Negaunee Middle School and Lakeview Elementary School. All six schools in Sault Ste. Marie, and the Whitefish Township School in Paradise, were also recognized.

“Sudden cardiac death of a young person is tragic and some of these events can be prevented with fast, appropriate medical response within three to five minutes” said Dr. Eden Wells, chief medical executive of MDHHS. “It is always wonderful to see communities come together to help prepare schools to respond to these medical emergencies.”

In order for a school to receive a MI HEARTSafe School designation, it must perform at least one cardiac emergency response drill per year. This school year, MAP-SCDY has identified the weeks of November 6-10, 2017 and February 5-9, 2018 as CPR/AED (automated external defibrillator) drill weeks to remind schools about the importance of practicing for this type of emergency. 

Other requirements for the MI HEARTSafe award include having a written medical emergency response plan and team; current CPR/AED certification of at least 10 percent of staff, and 50 percent of coaches including 100 percent of head varsity coaches and 100 percent of P.E. staff; accessible, properly maintained and inspected AEDs with signs identifying their location; and ensure pre-participation sports screening of all student athletes using the current physical and history form endorsed by the MHSAA.