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Senator Ruggerio Introduces Bill Requiring Defibrillators in all Middle & High Schools

Wednesday, February 25, 2015


Sen. Majority Leader Dominick J. Ruggerio

Senate Majority Leader Dominick J. Ruggerio has introduced a bill that requires defibrillators in all middle and high schools in the state, public and private. The bill would also require AED's to be available at all athletic fields or other locations where high schools or middle schools compete in sporting events. 

“In an Illinois high school last year, a student collapsed and died after a drill team practice. Since then, the state of Illinois has enacted legislation requiring AEDs in schools, making that state one of about 20 that have, so far, made deployment of the AEDs in schools mandatory. It’s time for Rhode Island to do the same," said Senate Leader Ruggerio.

About 325,000 Americans suffer sudden cardiac arrest every year and about 95 percent of them die before reaching a hospital. It is believed that several hundred children under the age of 21 suffer cardiac arrest each year. 

If defibrillation is performed within five to seven minutes of the incident, the victim's chances of survival increase by nearly 50 percent. 

“We need to take the steps necessary to protect our school children, even if there is a cost involved. This is a life-saving tool and it should not be left up to individual districts whether to have them or not,” Ruggerio said. 


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